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Lakewood girl becomes first Pierce County child to die of COVID-19.

A girl under the age of 10 who lived in the Lakewood region died of COVID-19 on Jan. 30. She is the first COVID-19 death under 18 reported in Pierce County.

The girl had multiple underlying health conditions.

“This sad news of this young girl’s death reminds us that we need to use all the best public health practices to protect each other from COVID-19,“ said Director of Health Anthony L-T Chen, MD, MPH. “COVID-19 will continue to be with us for some time. Making healthy choices and getting vaccinated are the best ways to help our community recover.“

Children are usually at less risk from COVID-19 than older people, but they do sometimes get seriously ill or even die. Children ages 5-11 are the least-vaccinated group of eligible people in Pierce County. Only 19% are fully vaccinated. Kids 5 and older are eligible to get vaccinated and everyone 12 and older should get booster shots. You can find your child’s dose at tpchd.org/vaxtothefuture.

We report COVID-19 deaths after we receive finalized death information from Washington State Department of Health.

We list the age of people who died by decade, such as under 10 or 70-79. If we listed exact ages, it would provide potentially identifiable health information.

In Pierce County, people who have not been vaccinated for COVID-19 have been:

  • 3 times more likely to be infected with COVID-19.
  • 10 times more likely to be hospitalized.
  • 9 times more likely to die.

Vaccines offer protection against more than COVID-19. No matter your age or where you live, learn, work or play, you should make sure your family is up to date on all vaccines.

You can find free immunizations for kids on our website. And it’s not too late to get your flu shot this season.

About Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department: Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department’s mission is to protect and improve the health of all people and places in Pierce County. As part of our mission, the Health Department tackles known and emerging health risks through policy, programs and treatment to protect public health. We are one of only 289 accredited health departments in the country and among 6 in the state to have met or exceeded the Public Health Accreditation Board’s quality standards. Learn more at tpchd.org.

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