KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are linking increasing COVID-19 cases to student athletes, among other youth.
Extracurricular activities have been connected to spreading infections among young people in Florida, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Indoor school sports: including basketball, hockey and wrestling, have been tied to clusters of cases of the highly contagious British variant of the coronavirus.
However, one health official told FOX4 that the sports themselves, while related to the issue, are not to blame.
“The zero to age 15 group, we are seeing our incidence rate increase,” said Derik Flerlage, infectious disease manager for the Shawnee County (Kan.) health department. “And we have confirmed variants in that population too, associated with things like sleepovers, associated with sporting events, but interestingly enough, not the actual sporting events themselves but what happens outside of that.”
Everyone 16 and older is now eligible to get immunized in most states.
Pfizer recently asked the Food and Drug Administration to expand use of its vaccine to include adolescents as young as 12.