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Most Cases of COVID-19 in State? It’s 20-29 Age Group

August 24, 2021

The Delta variant has changed the profile of the COVID-19 patient from frail and elderly to what some medical experts have been calling “younger, sicker, quicker.”

It’s still too early to determine if younger people are, in fact, getting either sicker or infected quicker but state Department of Public Health data leaves little doubt that young adults ages 20 to 29 are getting infected at a higher rate than any other age group. It now represents the highest number of cases (65,106), highest number of confirmed cases (57,901) and most cases per 100,000 people (13,990).

The graph below — use the dropdown menu to access the seven categories — includes data from the DPH’s most recent update, Aug. 23:

Connecticut is the nation’s third-most vaccinated state, with 65.14 percent of the population fully vaccinated, but the least vaccinated segment of the state’s eligible population are the 12-15 (49.2 percent) and 16-24 (57.3 percent) age groups.

“Younger is correct,” says Dr. Ulysses Wu, Hartford HealthCare’s System Director of Infection Disease and Chief Epidemiologist. “And that is the population that remains mostly unvaccinated. I’m not going to say quicker and sicker because it’s a little bit of a hyperbolic statement now. Are they getting more ill earlier in the illness? Yes, that’s a possibility. . . . In the vaccinated, they are actually coming in with milder illnesses, almost like allergies, almost like a cold at this point.

Here’s a breakdown of vaccinations, initiated (one dose of two dose vaccine) or fully vaccinated, by age group in the state through Aug. 18:

For now, people 12-17 are eligible only for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Testing continues in clinical trials to determine the efficacy and safety of vaccines in people under 12.

“I don’t have a crystal ball,” says Dr. Virginia Bieluch, Chief of Infectious Diseases at The Hospital of Central Connecticut in New Britain, “but I’m anticipating and I’m optimistic that, hopefully in the fall, we will have some data on efficacy and safety of these vaccines in children younger than 12 and we can start vaccinating our youngsters so that they can back to a way more normal life.”