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Gov. Cuomo warns of COVID-related illness in children that has claimed three lives

Calling it a “truly disturbing” development, Governor Andrew Cuomo on Saturday shared new information about how the coronavirus is effecting young people.

The governor said New York hospitals have reported 73 cases of what they believe to be a COVID-related illness in children who are toddlers or elementary-school aged. The symptoms present themselves similar to Kawasaki disease and toxic shock syndrome, the governor said. Three children have died, he said.

“These are children who come in and don’t present the symptoms that we normally are familiar with COVID,” Mr. Cuomo said. “They’re not respiratory problems. I think that’s one of the reasons why this might be getting discovered this far into the process.”

The governor said the infection is an inflammation of blood vessels that is causing heart problems in children. In each of the instances, the children are testing positive for COVID-19 or have antibodies associated with the virus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is asking the New York State Department of Health to develop national criteria to assist other states and hospital systems in treating and identifying this new development among youths.

The governor said it’s just the latest change to how experts understand the illness.

“So much of the initial information we had turned out to be incorrect,” he said of COVID-19. “This is the last thing we need at this time.”

Data from the New York State Department of Health shows eight additional deaths have been reported among New York State residents between the age of 10-19.