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Local health experts urge vaccinations for children as pediatric hospitalizations increase

5 months 2 weeks 5 days ago Sunday, January 09 2022 Jan 9, 2022 January 09, 2022 7:40 PM January 09, 2022 in News - Local

Health experts are concerned about the rapid spread of the omicron COVID-19 variant and say adolescents are one of the most liable to get the virus because, statewide, parents are still in the works in getting kids vaccinated. 

"When they go back to school, maybe with the omicron variant, we see a virus that is spreadable," said STHS Chairman of Emergency Medicine Dr. Carlos Ramirez. "A lot faster than the delta variant." 

As of Friday in Hidalgo County, 21 children were hospitalized with COVID-19, and one was in an intensive care unit. 

Dr. Carlos Ramirez says while there's been an increase in children being hospitalized for the virus over the past four months, he's still pushing parents to get their kids five and older vaccinated, and children 12 and older boosted to avoid the hospital altogether. 

"We wanted the vaccine to prevent people from going to a severe disease, and the good news is the breakthrough infections are usually resulting in mild symptoms, or not at all," Dr. Ramirez said. 

Cameron County Health Authority Dr. James Castillo echoes the same message, informing families that now is the time for children to be vaccinated.  

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