US scientists say infection rates among US adolescents and youth were higher than in older adults from the start of the COVID-19 pandemic until the autumn of 2020, before vaccines were available.
In 16 of the 19 states they examined, the incidence rate and relative risk of COVID-19 infection from the original virus strain were higher in adolescents and youth than in older adults.
For example, in Florida, the incidence rate in adolescents and youth was 0.055 compared with 0.028 in older adults, meaning adolescents and youth had 1.94 times the risk of contracting COVID-19.
The results are contrary to reports from Europe and Asia, the researchers say, although UK research has found that the Delta variant is also more likely to infect teens and youth than older adults.
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