Young adults in the US account for a surprising percentage of severe COVID-19 illness, according to preliminary data published yesterday by the CDC.
Of ~2,500 more serious US cases, 38% of hospitalized adults were between 20 and 54 years. Nearly half of those admitted to intensive care were under 65, theNew York Times reports.
It isn't clear if some of the younger adults had underlying conditions that rendered them more vulnerable. But still, "the fact that they were taking up hospital beds and space in intensive care units was significant," Pam Belluck writes.
Outcomes are not yet clear, but:
- People 85 years or older accounted for 15 of the 44 deaths recorded
- 20 were between 64 and 84. 9 adults under age 65 died.
US officials have stepped up messaging to millennials and all groups to comply with social distancing measures. They warn that the pandemic—and harsh new restrictions—could stretch on for up to 18 months, CNN reports.
Meanwhile: President Trump announced that the US would invoke the Defense Production Act—which could help address serious shortage of supplies to treat patients and protect health workers responding to the crisis,according to NPR. Public health and legal experts welcome the move, which they said should have been made days ago.