Younger Adults Comprise Big Portion of Coronavirus Hospitalizations in U.S.

The age groups of 55 to 64 and 45 to 54 each included 18 percent of the total. Only 5 percent of cases were diagnosed in people 19 and younger.

The risk of a patient requiring hospitalization or dying of the infection caused by the coronavirus increased with age, as has been the pattern in other countries.

The report included no information about whether patients of any age had underlying risk factors, such as a chronic illness or a compromised immune system. So, it is impossible to determine whether the younger patients who were hospitalized were more susceptible to serious infection than most others in their age group.

But experts said that even if younger people in the report were medical outliers, the fact that they were taking up hospital beds and space in intensive care units was significant.

And these more serious cases represent the leading edge of how the pandemic is rapidly unfolding in the United States, showing that adults of all ages are susceptible and should be concerned about protecting their own health, and not transmitting the virus to others.

The youngest age group, people 19 and under, accounted for less than 1 percent of the hospitalizations, and none of the I.C.U. admissions or deaths. This dovetails with data from other countries so far. This week, however, the largest study to date of pediatric cases in China found that a small segment of very young children may need hospitalization for very serious symptoms, and that one 14-year-old boy in China died from the virus.

Of the 44 people whose deaths were recorded in the report, 15 were age 85 or older and 20 were between the ages of 65 to 84. There were nine deaths among adults age 20 to 64, the report said.

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