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Pediatrician explains COVID concerns as child hospitalizations tick upward in Alabama

(WBRC)
Published: Jul. 29, 2021 at 10:05 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 30, 2021 at 2:20 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - While the first iteration of COVID-19 did not show rampant spread in a classroom setting, experts say the Delta variant is much more contagious.

In a town hall style meeting, the Medical Association of Alabama hosted Drs. David Kimberlin and Scott Harris regarding children and COVID as back-to-school dates loom.

“I am scared right now for what lies in front of us with respect to our children,” said Dr. Kimberlin, pediatric infectious disease specialist, American Academy of Pediatrics member and CDC liaison with three decades of experience.

He says even given that fear, the solution is to mask students and not turn back to virtual learning. “We know now that children and adolescents need to be in school,” says Dr. Kimberlin. He along with state health officer Dr. Scott Harris noted that child hospitalizations with COVID have risen, citing data from two days ago.

“We had I think 32 pediatric patients around the state, along with one infant that has been hospitalized,’ Dr. Harris said.

Given the possibility of increased child hospitalizations, Dr. Kimberlin urges masks and vaccinations as the primary weapons to battle the virus, saying the precautions could save children from suffering needlessly.

“I think we are facing a catastrophe, I also think we have the tools to avoid that,” said Dr. Kimberlin.

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