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Covid Update: New York City leads in child hospitalizations, Brazil has vax for children

Brazil’s regulators have approved a vaccine for children, but Bolsonaro isn’t happy

The number of children with covid-19 recently hospitalized in New York City has increased by nearly five times this month, New York state officials said at a news conference, the Washington Post reports.

In the week starting Dec. 5, city hospitals admitted 22 children. But during a five-day period beginning Dec. 19, that figure rose to 109. The increase reflects a broader surge of coronavirus infections in the United States, driven in part by the omicron variant. As of last week, nearly 2,000 confirmed or suspected pediatric covid patients were hospitalized nationally, a 31 percent jump in 10 days.

Officials are hoping a city mandate that took effect Monday requiring workers at an estimated 184,000 businesses to get at least one vaccine dose will curb infections. “We need more and more people vaccinated,” Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) said.

Here’s what to know:

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Monday cut the recommended isolation time for people with asymptomatic coronavirus infections to five days.
  • Widespread flight cancellations continue — blamed on a combination of staffing shortages linked to the omicron variant and dangerous winter weather. Over 4,000 flights to, from or inside the United States have been canceled since Friday, and more are likely in the days ahead.
  • The highly transmissible omicron variant continues to sweep the nation, with Florida reporting 39,000 new cases of infection Monday, following the Christmas weekend.

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