SAN JOSE, Calif. - A new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report warns COVID-19 is sickening people of all age groups not just older people and those with pre-existing medical conditions. The CDC found in the United States, a significant number of people who have been hospitalized with the disease are adults under the age of 65.
On Thursday evening, a park in Campbell was almost packed with most people practicing social distancing. On the basketball court- 31-year-old Kristopher Nelson and his friends were playing man to man defense with little concern of contracting COVID-19.
“To be honest,” said Nelson of South San Jose. “I’m not too worried about it just because my age I think I will be able to get over it.”
25-year-old Leland Prior of Campbell felt the same way.
“If I do get it,” said Prior. “I will probably get over it. I’m young and have a strong immune system so I’m not too worried.”
“Generally the youth as we know for generations have often had a sense of invincibility,” said Dr. Vanila Singh, an associate professor from the Stanford School of Medicine.
Health experts are sounding the alarm after new data from the CDC suggested people younger than 65 face a high risk of infection.
The CDC report found that out of 508 people who were hospitalized in the United States for Covid-19, 17 percent were ages 55 to 64, 18 percent were 45 to 54 and 20 percent were 20 to 44.
“It’s nothing to take lightly,” said Dr. Singh. “For one, you could get sick yourself but even more importantly you could spread it to people who have much more devastating outcomes.”
Videos on social media this week show students partying during the pandemic. Popular beach destinations were crowded with college students on Spring Break vacation.
“They are thinking about themselves,” said Harold Slone of Campbell. “They are not thinking about others. They say we are young well we aren't going to get it which is not true.”
80-year-old Harold Slone said it makes him sad to see young people not taking the disease seriously.
“They have parents probably, grandparents, they should pay attention and not give it to anybody else,” said Slone.
Celebrity Kylie Jenner recorded a message on Instagram after the U.S. Surgeon General asked her and other influencers to get teens and millennials to understand the severity of the virus.
“Please stay inside, social distancing, you might have it and not even know, not a cure right now. Nobody's immune to this, millennials are not immune to this,” said Jenner.
The virus remains deadlier in people ages 65 and up. The CDC reporting the age bracket compromises 80 percent of COVID-19 deaths.