1 in 5 hospitalized young adults need ICU after coronavirus infection

A significant number of young adults hospitalized with COVID-19 may be at risk of serious and lasting damage to their health.

According to a new research letter from Harvard University, of the 3,222 people who were 18 to 34 years old and who needed hospitalization, around 1 in 5 required intensive care.


Furthermore, 10% needed a ventilator, 2.7% died, and another 3% required ongoing care in a post-acute treatment facility after the virus cleared from their bodies.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently announced that the infection rate in kids 17 and under is markedly and “steadily” increasing, too.

In this June 2020 photo made available by Michelle Zymet, her husband John Place breathes through a ventilator while fighting COVID-19 in an ICU bed at Westside Regional Medical Center in Plantation, Fla. (Michelle Zymet)

Last Friday, a 28-year-old South Carolina teacher — Demetria “Demi” Bannister — was diagnosed with COVID-19; she passed away on Monday.

At least six U.S.educators have died as children returned to schools across the country for their fall semester and states relaxed health restrictions. In addition, a return to college campuses has sparked rapid-moving outbreaks and forced thousands of young people to self-isolate.

In August, the World Health Organization warned that young adults are emerging as the primary spreaders of the virus in many countries.

Nations in Asia have experienced surges in which the age of those infected skewed younger, as reported by The Washington Post.

“People in their 20s, 30s and 40s are increasingly driving the spread,” Takeshi Kasai, the World Health Organization’s Western Pacific regional director, said at a news briefing last month. “The epidemic is changing.”

Harvard researchers found that some preexisting conditions were more prevalent among young patients who had been ravaged by the virus or perished, that male patients were more likely than women to develop serious or life-threatening conditions and that more than half of the hospitalized patients were Black or Hispanic


The virus has killed Black Americans at a disproportionate rate.

“Given the sharply rising rates of COVID-19 infection in young adults, these findings underscore the importance of infection prevention measures in this age group,” the research team wrote.