EXPERTS have said more young people are becoming critically ill with coronavirus, with increasing numbers needing intensive care.
Doctors from the World Health Organisation said more people in their 30s and 40s were falling ill with the virus, as two UK teenagers died in recent weeks.
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Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, WHO’s coronavirus technical lead, said that while older people are worst affected, there has been an increase in young people dying from the disease.
At a press conference in Geneva on Friday she said: “We are seeing more and more younger individuals who are experiencing severe disease.”
Dr Van Kerkhove continued: “I should say, overall, most of the people who are experiencing severe disease and ending up in ICU are people of older age, and are people who have underlying conditions.
“But what we are seeing in some countries, individuals who are in their 30s, 40s and 50s who are in ICUs and have died.
She said that the WHO needs to “better understand” why young people were dying from coronavirus, adding “there are still many unknowns at this present time.”
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The health experts’ warnings came as two teenagers died from coronavirus in the UK in recent weeks.
Ismail Mohamed Abdulwahab, 13, and Luca Di Nicola, 19, both passed away after becoming infected with the virus.
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Ismail, from Brixton, first showed symptoms on March 26, and was rushed to King’s College Hospital after having trouble breathing.
His relatives said the following day he tested positive for COVID-19 and was put on a ventilator.
He died in the early hours of Monday morning, and his family said they were “beyond devastated.”
An appeal to help fund his funeral was set up by his brother, and has already reached £24,000.
Mr Di Nicola, a chef from Nereto in Italy, also had no underlying health conditions.
He was taken to North Middlesex Hospital in north London, but died 30 minutes later from fulminant pneumonia.
His brother, Davide Di Nicola, wrote on Instagram: “We both grew and matured and you, surely more mature than me, had the courage and the desire to bring new goals.
“Cooking, your greatest passion would have taken you far.”
He added: “I will try to express some of your wishes and fulfil part of your dreams, it will be like doing it together also because you are here with me and you will always be. I send you a hug up there, to that starred restaurant.
“I love you my brother!”
There are currently 38,168 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK, and 3,645 have died.
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