Three kids per day under the age of 10 admitted to B.C. hospitals with COVID-19 from January 9 to 15

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      The arrival of the Omicron variant seems to be taking a greater toll on young children.

      According to the B.C. Centre for Disease Control's COVID-19 Situation Report for January 9 to 15, 22 kids under the age of 10 were hospitalized with the disease over that seven-day period.

      That was up from 18 in this age bracket in the previous week and 10 in the week before that.

      The charts in these weekly reports also reveal that there has been a 22.2 percent increase in hospitalizations among kids under 10 in the last two weeks from the total reached over the previous 22 months.

      In total, 220 kids under 10 had been hospitalized in B.C. due to COVID-19 by January 15 since the pandemic began. Within this group, there have been two deaths.

      Recent COVID-19 Situation Reports show that 18 kids under 10 have been sent to the intensive-care unit since the start of the pandemic, including two in the first two weeks of January.

      Epidemiologists have been noticing rising hospitalizations of young children in other countries since the arrival of the Omicron variant.

      B.C. has the second-lowest COVID-19 vaccination rate in the country for children between 5 and 11 years old, with 51 percent having received their first dose. 

      The Ministry of Health's daily COVID-19 briefings do not break down hospitalizations by age.

      Today, the ministry reported another 13 deaths from COVID-19, lifting the provincewide toll to 2,588 since the pandemic began.

      There are now 977 people with COVID-19 in B.C. hospitals, including 141 in intensive care.


      Today, B.C. Green Leader Sonia Furstenau called on the B.C. government to immediately report age-related data on hospitalizations.

      “Parents should know if there is a rise in children being hospitalized in B.C. due to COVID-19 infections," Furstenau said in a news release. "Providing transparent data and clear information should be recognized as a primary responsibility of government during a pandemic."