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82 New York City Children Have Rare Illness Tied to COVID-19

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May 13, 2020 By Allie Griffin

The number of New York City children inflicted with a rare and potentially deadly illness likely tied to the coronavirus continues to rise — with 30 new cases overnight.

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced today that 82 children have the illness doctors are calling “pediatric multi-system inflammatory syndrome”  — up from 52 confirmed cases yesterday and 38 confirmed Monday.

“This number has gone up consistently in recent days,” de Blasio said at City Hall.

Statewide, there are now more than 100 cases of the mysterious condition that can cause inflammation of organs, leading to organ failure. Roughly 70 percent of the children have been admitted to intensive care units, Governor Andrew Cuomo said today.

There have been cases in 14 other states and five European countries, according to Cuomo.

A 5-year-old boy in New York City died from the illness last week and there have been two other deaths elsewhere in New York State.

“A few days ago we lost a child, that’s the first time we saw a child die from this horrible syndrome and we all have to work together hoping and praying that there will not be another child lost and that we can save every child going forward,” de Blasio said.

The syndrome is similar to toxic shock syndrome or Kawasaki disease, health experts say. If left untreated the condition can permanently damage a child’s heart.

However, the illness can be successfully treated if caught early. Thus, the city is launching a multilingual public awareness campaign today to target parents.

“The sooner they get health care, the more chance that a child can be saved,” de Blasio said.

The uptick in the childhood syndrome comes as the number of COVID-19 deaths surpassed 20,000 in New York City.

Across the city, 20,316 New Yorkers have died from coronavirus — 15,233 with confirmed cases and 5,083 with probable cases — as of Tuesday evening.

In Queens, 5,769 people have died from the virus, both probable and confirmed cases, as of yesterday.

The total number of cases in New York City climbed to 185,206, with 57,178 in Queens alone also as of yesterday evening.

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