ORLANDO, Fla. – Almost 60% of Americans have had a COVID-19 infection, and some 75% of American children have been infected, according to a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The figures, published Tuesday in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, showed 57.7% of the American population has had some level of COVID-19 infection. The number was reached through a seroprevalence study of antibodies in blood samples. This is because not all COVID-19 cases are diagnosed or reported, and some are asymptomatic, the CDC said.
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The report also said the omicron variant contributed to the growth of COVID-19 infections among the populace. From December 2021 to February 2022, the CDC said overall prevalence of COVID-19 antibodies increased from 33.5% to 57.7%.
According to the report, around one-third of new antibodies from COVID-19 infections among children have appeared since December 2021.
Among children aged 0 to 11 years old, the prevalence of COVID-19 increased from 44.2% to 75.2% between December and February. Among children aged 12 to 17 years old, COVID-19 prevalence increased from 45.6% to 74.2% in the same time period, the CDC said.
The numbers are in line with the growth of pediatric COVID-19 hospitalizations between December and February, which in Florida were higher than hospitalizations among adults, according to data from the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services.
Despite the growth of COVID-19 antibodies, the CDC said vaccination is still the best protection from COVID-19 infection and hospitalization in both adults and children.