Golisano not seeing same degree of uptick in COVID hospitalizations reported statewide

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — The New York State Department of Health is raising the alarm as COVID-19 hospitalization rates among young children continue to rise. Recently, close to 600 children were admitted to the hospital.

News10NBC found out what the situation is like at Golisano Children’s Hospital.

Gov. Kathy Hochul Friday said the dramatic increase in pediatric hospitalization is about an eight-fold increase across the state. Here in the Rochester area, the numbers are not as high.

Golisano Children’s Hospital Pediatrician Dr. Stephen Cook said the majority of children coming to the hospital are primarily coming because of COVID.

"They are sick with respiratory symptoms, or an exacerbation of their underlying condition by COVID," Cook said. "OK, there’s been maybe 30% at the most, sometimes only 10% of the kids are in, and found to be COVID. So a kid comes in skiing, breaks his ankle, we swab, he’s positive for COVID. You know so we get some of those."

Cook says GCH has seen a modest uptick in hospitalization as well, but not at the same level other hospitals in New York are experiencing.

"We have seen as high as 12, or 13. I think we’re right about nine, or 10 recently, but that’s current, and sometimes you have a kid that comes in really for like 24 to 48 hours, very short, and they leave. So we’ve had days where it’s five, and two days later it’s eight. So you know it’s changed," Cook said.

Although the age range of the children varies, Cook says one thing is for certain.

"We’re also getting kids who are unvaccinated. Kids under 5 can’t get vaccinated, and that’s one of the things the Governor has highlighted when they are seeing kids," Cook said.

He goes on to say although this is putting some strain on the hospital, the uptick in hospitalizations is manageable.

"Right now my understanding is that we are doing our scheduled emergent type of case. Everything that’s emergent, or urgent is done and even certain scheduled cases. We haven’t had a slowdown. It really comes down to how close we are to census, and in reality is that every year we get close to our census if not a little bit over because of respiratory illnesses," Cook said.

He finished by saying this trend can be reversed if more parents with children old enough for the vaccine, get vaccinated sooner rather than later.