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2 children, including newborn, die from COVID-19 in Duval County, doctor says

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A 2-week-old baby in Duval County has died from COVID-19, becoming one of the youngest victims to die from the virus in Jacksonville.

Dr. Michael Gayle, the medical director of the pediatric intensive care unit at Wolfson Children’s Hospital, reported the sad news during an online webinar Wednesday. The webinar featured local doctors around the Jacksonville area who were giving a COVID-19 update. Gayle said a second child also died from the virus this week.

Action News Jax is working to confirm the age of that child.

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Our medical expert Dr. Michelle Aquino has reported about how contagious the delta variant is for children.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported around 470 pediatric deaths between the ages of 0 and 18 since the start of the pandemic in 2020.

When it comes to the number of cases in Florida, the state is now issuing only weekly reports, while many hospitals are choosing to do daily reports.

Since the start of the pandemic, Wolfson Children’s Hospital can confirm seven patient deaths, ages ranging from infancy to teens.

Four of the seven deaths, including a 16-year-old, happened during the latest surge COVID-19 cases brought on by the delta variant in the Jacksonville area, which began in late June.

As of Thursday, within the Baptist Health’s 5-hospital health system, there are 368 COVID-19 patients. Of those patients, 349 of them are adults and 19 are children, and of those children, four are in the ICU. Baptist Health added that 41 new COVID-19 patients were admitted on Wednesday, and eight of them are children.

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More than 90% of the coronavirus patients age 12 or older are not fully vaccinated, hospital leaders stated.

“Our hearts go out to the families who have lost children due to COVID-19. Wolfson Children’s and our caregivers grieve along with them,” the hospital stated following the passing of the latest two children to the virus.

“We urge parents and other caregivers to take precautions to protect themselves and their children from COVID-19. That includes getting themselves and children ages 12+ vaccinated, and taking CDC-recommended precautions,” the statement continued.

Action News Jax will provide updates to this story as soon as they are available.

Aurielle Eady

Aurielle Eady, Action News Jax

Aurielle Eady is a digital content producer for Action News Jax.