November 17, 2022

Parents’ COVID-19 vaccination status linked to children’s hospital admissions

By: Judy Mathias
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Editor's Note

This French study finds that during the Delta and Omicron periods of COVID-19, parents’ vaccination status was associated with hospital admissions for their children younger than 5 years of age, for whom vaccines were not licensed.

During the study period, 599 children were admitted to the hospital. For 208, their parents’ vaccination status was known.

Of 163 (78%) children, 63 were admitted with COVID-19 during the Delta period (May 12-December 12, 2021), 6 during the washout period (week of December 13, 2021), and 94 during the Omicron period (December 20, 2021-February 14, 2022).

During Delta:

  • 51 (81%) children of unvaccinated parents were admitted.
  • 12 (19%) children with one or both parents vaccinated were admitted—8 (13%) with both parents and 4 (6%) with one parent.

During Omicron:

  • 27 (29%) children of unvaccinated parents were admitted.
  • 67 (71%) children with one or both parents vaccinated were admitted—57 (60%) with both parents and 10 (11%) with one parent.

The association between parent vaccination and risk of admissions for children younger than 5 years suggests that parents played a role in transmitting COVID-19 during both waves, but the association between protection and vaccination was lower in the Omicron period, the researchers say. The Omicron variant has been shown to be more transmissible and vaccine effectiveness lower.

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