Merced County Times Newspaper
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Health Officials Confirm First Pediatric Death Related to COVID-19 in Merced County

The Merced County Department of Public Health (Department) has confirmed the first pediatric death related to COVID-19 in Merced County – an infant with underlying medical conditions.

“While each life lost as a result of this virus is tragic, the loss of a child is felt across our entire community,” said Dr. Salvador Sandoval, Merced County’s Health Officer. “Our condolences go out to the family and to the many families that have suffered loss related to COVID-19. The best approach we can take to protect the children who cannot get vaccinated in our community is to get vaccinated ourselves.”

As of Tuesday, August 24, 2021, there are approximately 1,898 active cases in Merced County. The Department has seen an increased number of cases with children (ages 0-17). During the current surge, approximately 25% of cases have been identified in children whereas in previous waves only 11% of cases were identified within this age group.

Vaccines are now available for individuals 12 years and older and are easily accessible at many provider sites throughout Merced County, including health care offices, community clinics, pharmacies, and hospitals.

Those who would like to receive a COVID-19 vaccine are strongly encouraged to visit:, call 1-833-422-4255 or follow the Department of Public Health social media accounts for mobile COVID-19 vaccination site locations.

Merced County health officials strongly urge all residents to exercise the following safety measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19:

  • Get vaccinated
  • Follow CDPH guidelines on masking
  • Practice social distancing
  • Avoid large crowds and poorly ventilated areas
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