WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- Younger adults are also at risk of suffering severe illness from the novel coronavirus, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned.
- Among the 508 confirmed hospitalizations, 38% is comprised of adults aged 20-54.
- Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, advised the younger people not only to be wary over their health but also be cautious about their “societal responsibility” to protect the older people by making sure they don’t inadvertently pass on the infection to them.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned that younger adults are also at risk of suffering “severe outcomes” caused by the novel coronavirus — not just older people.
Out of the 508 known hospitalizations, 38% is comprised of adults aged 20-54, CDC said, citing an early analysis of about 2,500 of the first confirmed coronavirus cases in the United States. Among the 121 admitted patients in the intensive care unit, almost half (48%) was under the age of 65.
There might be an overestimation in the actual percentage of COVID-19-infected younger adults who required hospitalization or intensive care unit, as some are asymptomatic. Regardless, medical experts advised younger adults not to be complacent about the virus and to take the CDC data as a serious warning.
Stephen Morse, a professor of epidemiology at Columbia University, told The New York Times, “I think everyone should be paying attention to this. It’s not just going to be the elderly. There will be people age 20 and up. They do have to be careful, even if they think that they’re young and healthy.”
The notion was supported by Dr. Deborah Birx, one of the top experts on the Trump administration’s coronavirus task force. The Hill reported what the doctor echoed, “I’m going to call on that generation … not only calling on you to heed what’s in the guidance, but to really ensure that each and every one of you are protecting each other.”
Further, at a White House briefing on Wednesday, Birx said that there are reports coming out of France and Italy that some young people in these countries are getting very seriously ill in the ICUs.
Older adults are still at the highest risk of medical complications and death, according to the CDC analysis. The report shows that out of the 44 fatalities in the US, 80% were people 65 years old and above.
Younger people should also be highly aware of the “social responsibility” they have to protect older Americans, aside from being careful to safeguard their health from COVID-19, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, noted on Wednesday.
Fauci said, “You have a responsibility ― a societal responsibility ― to protect the vulnerable… You do that, interestingly, by not letting yourself get infected because you need to make sure that you don’t inadvertently pass on the infection to someone who would not fare as well as you fared because you’re young and healthy.”