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Young adults, teens lead Leon County COVID-19 cases

Posted at 11:19 PM, May 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-26 23:19:01-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — In Leon County the number of coronavirus cases continues to rise.

The county now has 349 positive cases, with the largest increase coming from young adults. Recent data shows some children are also testing positive.

Young adults aged 15 to 24 years make up the majority of COVID-19 cases in Leon County. They are leading the pack with 100 confirmed cases.

"Those are the ones who have mild symptoms but are, essentially, the ones who are going to spread it more," said Nectar Aintablian, a pediatrician-infectious disease expert.

The question is, why?

"Some of them are testing positive and doing whatever they normally do," Aintablian said. "If they are not feeling that sick, they are just going on."

Aintablian says the chance of people in that age bracket going to the hospital is generally low. And the rising number of cases in children under 15-years old is also causing concern.

The County Department of Health is reporting 10 cases in children five- through 14-years-old.

"Certainly, children in our area and elsewhere are getting COVID," said Nancy Wright, a pediatric endocrinologist. "It's unfounded, but they do get it, and they certainly get it in Leon County."

Children are at higher risk for any viral infection, but Wright says her concern is for children who deal with chronic illnesses, like diabetes.

"Diabetes itself is a risk factor for COVID," Wright said.

Wright says taking social distancing seriously is the only option for chronic patients.

As cases in young adults and teenagers rise, Aintablian says they must remember something very important.

"This is real," said Aintablian. "This is going to rebound if we're not careful."

Aintablian says younger children probably got the virus from family members, reminds young adults that just because you don't feel it doesn't mean you don't have it, and urges everyone to wear masks in public.

The Centers for Disease Control and prevention has resources available for parents who may have a child with COVID-19 symptoms, view them by clicking here.