World Health Organization (WHO) officials warn that ‘more young people are dying from COVID-19’

A lot still remains undiscovered about the virus, including why the disease affects some critically but not others.

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Officials of the World Health Organization (WHO) have warned that more young people are becoming critically ill and dying from COVID-19.

It is a mistake to believe that the virus only severely affects old people and those with underlying health conditions.

Head of WHO’s emerging diseases and zoonosis unit Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove said that more and more younger individuals are getting infected by the virus.

‘’We have seen some data from several countries across Europe where people of younger age have died’’, she said, adding that some of these individuals had underlying health conditions but some did not.

A lot still remains undiscovered about the virus, including why the disease affects some critically but not others. Van Kerkhove said that as the virus continues to spread, more clinical data is being collected and researchers are learning about the behavior of the virus.

While discussing the vulnerability of older people, she said that majority of the people with severe illnesses in intensive care tend to be of older age or have underlying conditions. But, in some countries, there are individuals in their 30s, 40s or 50s who are in the ICU and who have died.

In Italy, 10% to 15% of all people in intensive care are under 50 years old.

‘’There was a tendency for the last several months, almost a dismissive attitude, to say, ‘Well, this disease is severe in older people, and it’s fine in younger people’’, said executive director of WHO emergency program, Dr. Mike Ryan.

He emphasized on the importance of young people also taking precautionary measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

WHO previously warned that the virus can infect young people and even though it is rare, it can also develop into a severe and life-threatening disease.

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