COVID-19 hospitalizations in young kids jumped in second year of pandemic

In the second year of the pandemic, hospitalizations for COVID-19 surged by more than 600% among children aged 0 to 4, according to new data from the Canadian Institute of Health Information (CIHI).

From 2020 to 2021, there were 325 child hospitalizations for COVID-19 in this cohort.

However, from 2021 to 2022, 2,315 children aged 0 to 4 were hospitalized due to COVID-19 in Canada, CIHI reports.

Data released Thursday showed that COVID-19 was the sixth most common reason for hospitalization for children in this age group.

Respiratory infections unrelated to COVID-19 also surged again in 2021-2022 as a cause of hospitalization for children aged 0-4. Last year, non-COVID respiratory infections were not at all in the top 10 list of hospitalizations for this age group. In 2021-2022, ‘other acute lower respiratory tract infections’ were cited as his second most common reason for hospitalization. Pneumonia was fifth, and “acute upper respiratory tract infection” was his seventh.

Experts say such a large increase in hospitalizations for young children is alarming.

“The increase in hospitalizations due to COVID-19, respiratory infections, and other viral illnesses among our youngest Canadians in the second year of the pandemic is a significant impact on our youngest and most vulnerable population. It concerns both health and the additional burden placed on the healthcare system, Juliana Wu, director of acute and ambulatory health information services at CIHI, said in a press release. We continue to monitor hospital activities in this third year of the pandemic to understand the continued impact of COVID-19.”

The data also show that COVID-19 will hospitalize significantly more Canadians across all age groups between 2021 and 2022 than between 2020 and 2021.

From 2020 to 2021, COVID-19 was the seventh leading cause of hospitalization for all Canadians, according to CIHI. However, from 2021 to 2022, childbirth was the only thing that made him more likely to be hospitalized than COVID-19.

COVID-19 is second on the list of top 10 reasons for Canadian hospitalization in 2021-2022, followed by other medical care such as heart failure, acute myocardial infarction, substance use disorders, palliative care, COPD and bronchitis. , neurocognitive impairment, and mood (emotional lability). ) knee disorders and osteoarthritis, in that order.

According to CIHI, the total number of patients hospitalized in Canada due to COVID-19 in 2020-2021 was 47,715. From 2021 to 2022, he had 77,344 hospitalizations due to the virus.

The CIHI report notes that for the purposes of this data, hospitalizations due to COVID-19 were identified as hospitalizations where COVID-19 accounted for the majority of hospital stays. This number may differ from other datasets that include hospitalization data for all his COVID-19 diagnoses, regardless of primary or secondary diagnosis.

Childbirth was the number one reason for hospitalization in all states and territories, but new data shows COVID-19 is lower on the list in some areas.

The virus is the second leading cause of hospitalization in Ontario, Alberta and Manitoba, third in Saskatchewan, Yukon and British Columbia, fourth in the Northwest Territories, and fourth in Quebec in 2021-2022. I was fifth.

COVID-19 will not make the top 10 list of hospitalizations in Nunavut or any Atlantic state in 2021-2022.

The data show that some of the differences in causes behind hospitalizations between states are due to where services are provided. Some problems, such as mental health cases, have been reported from acute care hospitals in some states and psychiatric facilities in others. Jurisdiction.

In 2021-2022, the top five causes of hospitalization for children aged 0-4 years were neonatal jaundice, acute lower respiratory tract infections, disorders associated with shortened gestational age and low birth weight, asthma, and pneumonia.

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