Thursday, March 19, 2020

Younger Adults Make Up Big Portion of Coronavirus Hospitalizations in U.S.

New C.D.C. data showed that nearly 40 percent of patients sick enough to be hospitalized were aged 20 to 54. But the risk of dying was significantly higher in older people.

Selfies outside Columbia University’s library on Wednesday. New C.D.C. numbers indicate that young adults are not immune from infection.

By Pam Belluck

American adults of all ages — not just those in their 70s, 80s and 90s — are being seriously sickened by the coronavirus, according to a report on nearly 2,500 of the first recorded cases in the United States.

The report, issued Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, found that — as in other countries — the oldest patients had the greatest likelihood of dying and of being hospitalized. But of the 508 patients known to have been hospitalized, 38 percent were notably younger — between 20 and 54. And nearly half of the 121 patients who were admitted to intensive care units were adults under 65, the C.D.C. reported.

“I think everyone should be paying attention to this,” said Stephen S. Morse, a professor of epidemiology at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. “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.”  Read more >>