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COVID vaccine vital for teens as hospitalizations among age group rise, CDC says

The latest numbers from the Georgia Department of Public Health show that 61,656 12 to 15-year-olds have been vaccinated so far in Georgia.

ATLANTA — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is urging parents to vaccinate their teenagers against COVID-19. It says there’s been a rise in the number of adolescents hospitalized with COVID-19 in March and April.

In a new statement released Friday, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said:

"I am deeply concerned by the number of hospitalized adolescents and saddened to see the number of adolescents who required treatment in intensive care units or mechanical ventilation.”

According to the CDC, researchers found that in the first three months of the year, nearly one-third of teens hospitalized with COVID-19 needed to be admitted into an intensive care unit (ICU).

Mother of two Adrienne Hill, who is a healthcare worker, has already been hopeful that her 11 and 7-year-old will be able to get the shot soon.

“I am very excited about it,” she said. “For me, being in healthcare and knowing that susceptible age, especially that 12 and 13-year-old, when you have middle schoolers ... so, half of them are still 11 half of them are 12 and 13. You have that mix. As many of them that could get vaccinated, for me, it's opportune and exactly what I would like.”

The latest numbers from the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) show that 61,656 12 to 15-year-olds have been vaccinated so far in Georgia.

So far, 13,148 12-year-olds have been vaccinated, 15,054 13-year-olds have been vaccinated, 16,262 14-year-olds have been vaccinated and 17,192 15-year-olds have been vaccinated in Georgia.

Credit: GDPH

We are Where Atlanta Speaks so this is what some Georgians had to say.

“Some of my friends, they don’t think they’re going to get it – they definitely need to,” said 17-year-old Francisco Armstrong.

“We have the confidence that we don’t need it,” said Flor Guzman in a Spanish interview with 11Alive. She has not been vaccinated. “Doesn’t mean I won’t get sick, but I believe God will give us strength.”

“I really want him to be protected,” said Maricelis Armstrong, Francisco’s mother. “I know the vaccine works. I trust science.”

“I asked my 13-year-old daughter if she wanted the vaccine she said yes, but she’s not mature enough to analyze all sides of the issue,” added Angie Dabalos who hasn’t been vaccinated, and says she won’t be vaccinating her kids.

DPH also says that children 12 and older don’t need a parent or guardian to accompany them to their vaccine appointment anymore, just a signed consent form.

RELATED: Younger adolescents get ready to receive COVID-19 vaccine

RELATED: Pfizer asks FDA to allow its COVID-19 vaccine for younger teens

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