Idaho Marks First Pediatric Death From COVID-19, Infant's Age Not Disclosed to Public

Idaho health officials announced that an infant died of COVID-19 last month, marking the first pediatric death from the virus in the state.

To respect the privacy of the child's family, the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare did not publically announce the infant's name or age.

"Our hearts go out to the family of this child," Elke Shaw-Tulloch, administrator for the Idaho Division of Public Health, said in a Tuesday statement.

The death was confirmed by the Idaho Divison of Public Health and Southwest District Health, which oversees health facilities in Canyon, Adams, Owyhee, Payette, Gem, and Washington counties.

"We are saddened to hear of the loss of one of our newest community members," said Southwest District Health Director Nikole Zogg in the release. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family during this difficult time."

Since the beginning of the pandemic, there have been approximately 900 coronavirus-related children's deaths nationwide.

According to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, about 260 children under 18 have been hospitalized with the virus in the state.

"Infection with the virus can have devastating impacts on families, and this situation highlights the seriousness of COVID-19," Shaw-Tulloch said.

Health advisors said in the release that getting a COVID-19 vaccine can protect parents and prospective parents from severe illness from COVID-19, which can help protect babies and children who are too young to be vaccinated, as well.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

Infant dies from COVID-19 in Idaho
Idaho has announced the state's first pediatric death from COVID-19. Above, an EMS medic from the Houston Fire Department prepares to transport a Covid-19 positive girl, age 2, to a hospital on August 25, 2021 in Houston, Texas. John Moore/Getty Images

At least 37 children infected with coronavirus in the state have been diagnosed with Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome, a serious illness that can happen to people about four weeks after being infected.

The number of new daily COVID-19 cases in Idaho has dropped by nearly 39 percent over the past two weeks, but the state still has one of the highest per-capita infection rates in the nation, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University. One in 364 Idaho residents tested positive for coronavirus last week, ranking the state 12th in the U.S. for new cases per capita.

Since the pandemic began, at least 3,678 state residents have died from the virus.

About 44 percent of the state's residents are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and nearly half of Idaho's residents have received at least one vaccine dose.