The COVID Delta variant is hospitalizing extra youngsters than ever earlier than in a single Louisiana hospital, an infectious illness specialist has warned amid a surge in instances within the state.
According to the state’s Department of Health, 11,109 new COVID instances have been recorded in Louisiana since Friday, July 30. Children accounted for greater than 2,000 of them, WWL-TV reported citing the division. That quantities to round 18 p.c of recent instances.
“I am as worried about our children today as I have ever been,” Dr. Mark Kline, physician-in-chief at Children’s Hospital New Orleans (CHNOLA) stated at a press convention on Monday.
“This virus, the Delta variant of COVID, is every infectious disease specialist’s and epidemiologist’s worst nightmare.”
Half of the youngsters being admitted to the hospital had been “perfectly healthy” earlier than contracting the virus, in line with Dr. Kline, who stated that CHNOLA has seen 20 sufferers admitted on some days, far larger than the earlier day by day highs of seven.
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards reinstated the statewide masks mandate on Monday following a surge in COVID instances, which applies to Louisianans over the age of 5, no matter vaccination standing.
The mandate requires face masks to be worn indoors throughout the state, together with in faculties, from Wednesday, August 4 till no less than September 1.
“Young people from 12 to 18 are a huge part of community transmission right now,” Edwards stated on the press convention.
“So let’s rid ourselves of the notion that children can’t get COVID, or that they can’t have serious cases of disease.”
In a information launch issued on Friday, CHNOLA stated that 5 youngsters had been being handled in its intensive care unit.
“The [Delta variant] is more easily spread than earlier variants of the virus that we’ve seen. It produces a more serious disease, so we’re seeing sicker kids than we did before,” Dr. Kline stated on the time.
Parents of youngsters aged 12 and older are being urged to get them vaccinated. Children underneath the age of 12, nonetheless, usually are not eligible.
The press convention additionally noticed medical employees reveal that hospitals have run out of capability for sufferers affected by COVID-19 and different severe circumstances
“We are no longer giving adequate care to these patients,” stated Dr. Catherine O’Neal, the chief medical officer at Our Lady of the Lake Medical Center in Baton Rouge, which is Louisiana’s largest hospital.
“I have seen people in four-wheeler accidents and motorcycle accidents and farming accidents in the last two weeks, who sat in their ERs in their small towns.
“Those are my folks. Those are your loved ones members. And once they get maimed, they don’t seem to be coming to a trauma middle, as a result of there aren’t any extra beds.”
Dr. Phyllis Mason, the chief medical officer at Natchitoches Regional Medical Center, said: “We haven’t got the capability to care for the COVID sufferers and people different sufferers which are coming in for routine issues, in addition to severe issues.
“And so it’s really creating that bottleneck where we don’t have the capacity on our medical floor to admit these patients even to a bed.”
Mason went on: “In addition to that, other hospitals are at capacity as well, and so we’re having to hold patients in the emergency room because we can’t transfer them anywhere.”