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the coronavirus crisis

Pediatric cases of COVID-19 are declining in the U.S.: 'Encouraging news'

New COVID-19 cases are declining in the United States, including among children, amid what one expert believes will be the "last major wave of infection." 

Since Sept. 1, the number of new daily cases of COVID-19 in the United States has declined 35 percent, The New York Times reports. According to CNN, the U.S. is currently averaging about 107,000 new cases each day, compared to over 150,000 a month ago. Plus, the Times writes, "even pediatric cases are falling, despite the lack of vaccine authorization for children under 12." 

Jennifer Nuzzo, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health epidemiologist, told The Washington Post that it's "encouraging news we see pediatric cases falling despite the absence of vaccines because it means we can do a lot by making sure we control spread of the viruses among adults." The American Academy of Pediatrics most recently reported that there was an 8.5 percent decline in the number of children who tested positive for COVID-19 during the week ending on Sept. 23, although it was still the fifth consecutive week that there were more than 200,000 cases among kids, according to CNN

The Times' David Leonhardt writes that the overall decline in COVID-19 cases in the United States is coming "even as millions of American children have again crowded into school buildings," though he cautions that "there is no guarantee that the decline in caseloads will continue."

But Dr. Scott Gottlieb, former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, told the Times that "barring something unexpected, I'm of the opinion that this is the last major wave of infection." The decline also comes as parents are still waiting for a coronavirus vaccine to be made available for kids under 12. Pfizer and BioNTech are seeking authorization of their vaccine for kids between 5 and 11, and experts say that vaccine could earn emergency approval by Halloween.