COVID-19 hospitalization rates increased recently for teens, and a sizable proportion of those hospitalized were admitted to the intensive care unit, according to new research.

Fiona P. Havers, M.D., from the CDC COVID-19 Response Team, and colleagues describe the epidemiology of COVID-19-associated hospitalizations in adolescents and compare it to adolescent hospitalizations associated with other vaccine-preventable respiratory viruses. COVID-19-associated hospitalizations were examined among adolescents aged 12 to 17 years, including demographic characteristics of those admitted during Jan. 1 to March 31, 2021, and hospitalization rates during March 1, 2020, to April 24, 2021.

The researchers found that 31.4 percent of the 204 adolescents who were likely hospitalized primarily for COVID-19 during Jan. 1 to March 31, 2021, were admitted to an intensive care unit, and 4.9 percent required invasive mechanical ventilation; no associated deaths were observed. 

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