Nearly 8.5 million children in the US have tested positive for Covid-19 since the onset of the pandemic, and Covid-19 cases among American children are "increasing exponentially," according to the latest report of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Children's Hospital Association.
A total of 8,471,003 child Covid-19 cases had been reported across the country as of January 6, and children represented 17.4 per cent of all confirmed cases, according to the report published late Monday.
The overall rate was 11,255 cases per 100,000 children in the population, Xinhua news agency reported.
Covid-19 cases among US children are "increasing exponentially," far exceeding the peak of past waves of the pandemic, according to the report.
For the week ending January 6, over 580,000 child Covid-19 cases were reported, a 78 per cent increase over the week before, and an almost tripling of case counts from the two weeks prior, according to the AAP.
This marks the 22nd week in a row child Covid-19 cases in the US are above 100,000. Since the first week of September, there have been over 3.4 million additional child cases, according to the AAP.
Children accounted for 1.7 to 4.3 per cent of total reported hospitalisations, and 0 to 0.27 per cent of all Covid-19 deaths, according to the report.
"There is an urgent need to collect more age-specific data to assess the severity of illness related to new variants as well as potential longer-term effects," the AAP said in the report.