Remarkably high number of Covid-19 hospital patients under the age of 30
The influx of new Covid-19 hospital patients who are under the age of 30 has never been as high as it is now, the LCPS said in an alert. The office coordinates the distribution of coronavirus patients across the country, and issues daily reports about the number of Covid-19 patients in hospitals. Thus far, the LCPS cannot provide a concrete reason for the increase in patients under 30 years of age, but said the increase is most visible in the regular care wards thus far.
Coronavirus infection rates among young people have been extremely high in recent weeks. "We weren't too concerned about that, because these age groups are at the lowest risk, but our data specialists were impressed by the high admissions rates," said a spokesperson for the LCPS. She hopes that more clarity can be provided in the coming days. The LCPS will study the underlying data, but is not yet ready to share its conclusions.
Figures from the RIVM in recent weeks have shown that many people have contracted the coronavirus, especially in younger age groups. In the latest weekly reports, the number of infections was highest among 18 to 24-year-olds. The RIVM recorded about 3,000 cases per 100,000 inhabitants just in that group. That is more than six times as many infections as among people in their sixties and even fourteen times as many as among people aged 70 to 79 years.
One question being analyzed is whether the rising hospital admissions among young people can be entirely explained by the explosive increase in coronavirus infections among people under 30.
According to the spokesperson, it is not a forgone conclusion to say that there is a link to the manner in which Covid-19 patients are registered in hospital data. If someone who was admitted to a hospital for another reason later tests positive for the coronavirus, that patient will also count as a Covid-19 patient in statistical updates. The reporting is handled this way since a patient who tests positive has to be isolated from others just like patients with serious symptoms of the coronavirus disease. "But those numbers are rather small,” said the spokesperson.
The LCPS cannot yet be more specific about the affected demographics, such as a breakdown of the ages of hospitalized patients under 30. In any case, the chairman of the Dutch Association for Pediatrics (NVK), Károly Illy, has not received any reports about an uptick in hospital admissions among children with Covid-19, he said when asked.
When someone with Covid-19 is admitted to hospital, it is often about two weeks after that person has become infected with coronavirus. Research has shown that infections linked to the Omicron variant, which has quickly displaced the Delta variant of the coronavirus, may cause hospital admissions at a lower rate than its predecessor.
Reporting by ANP.