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Idaho reports its first death of a child due to COVID-19

Southwest District Health

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare reported Tuesday that an infant under the age of 1 died of COVID-19 in October.

It’s the first COVID-19 death of an Idaho child under the age of 18. Nationwide, 282 children younger than 4 have died from COVID-19.

"We were saddened to hear of the loss of one of our newest community members. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family during this difficult time," said Nikki Zogg, the director of Southwest District Health based in Caldwell.

The child lived in Southwest District Health’s boundaries, which includes Adams, Canyon, Gem, Owyhee, Payette and Washington counties. The health departments did not release more information to protect the privacy of the family.

During a media briefing Tuesday, Idaho health officials said this case emphasizes the seriousness of COVID for families, and also the need for adults to get vaccinated to protect ineligible kids.

In September, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released an urgent recommendation encouraging people who are pregnant, recently pregnant (including those who are lactating), trying to become pregnant now, or who might become pregnant in the future, to get vaccinated.

Pregnancy is also a medical condition that makes someone eligible for a COVID-19 booster shot.

The CDC reports symptomatic pregnant people are two times more likely than non-pregnant people to require ICU care and are at a 70% increased risk of death due to COVID.

Find reporter Rachel Cohen on Twitter @racheld_cohen

Copyright 2021 Boise State Public Radio

As the south-central Idaho reporter, I cover the Magic and Wood River valleys. I also enjoy writing about issues related to health and the environment.