LIMA — Six infants from Allen County have been hospitalized with COVID-19 in the last two weeks, Allen County Public Health reported on Friday.
The young children, all of whom were one year old or younger, accounted for more than one quarter of the 22 Allen County residents newly hospitalized with the illness in the last two weeks, according to ACPH data.
Their condition was unknown as of deadline Friday.
Allen County is now classified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as a medium-risk community for virus transmission due to the recent uptick in COVID-19 hospitalizations.
This is the first time Allen County has seen its risk level set to medium since the CDC revised its alert system in February to account for hospital utilization and local case rates. Previously, the CDC relied exclusively on positive tests to determine which communities were at highest risk for virus transmission.
Auglaize, Hardin, Putnam and Van Wert counties have also been elevated to medium risk, per the CDC.
The CDC recommends anyone at high risk for serious illness to wear a mask when their community is classified as medium risk.
Everyone else is encouraged to stay up to date on their COVID-19 vaccinations, which includes boosters for anyone 5 years and older who has previously been vaccinated, and to get tested if symptoms develop.
Allen County Public Health recently started administering COVID-19 vaccines to children as young as six months old, who recently became eligible for pediatric versions of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.
While children are the least likely to experience severe illness from COVID-19, more than 3,600 Ohio children have been hospitalized with the illness to date, according to the Ohio Department of Health.
Thirty-one of those children have died, including 11 children who were younger than 5.
Pediatric vaccine appointments are available on Wednesdays and Thursdays at the health department’s office and may be made online at gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov or by calling 419-228-4457. Appointments are also available for adults seeking a booster dose or their initial COVID-19 vaccine series.