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A woman, 25, grieves with her daughter, 2, after her mother, 54, died at home of COVID on Sept. 13 in Houston. Photo: John Moore/Getty Images

More than 142,000 children in the U.S. under the age of 18 had a primary caregiver die during the coronavirus pandemic, a new study shows.

By the numbers: The study, published by the medical journal Pediatrics, found that children of color accounted for 65% of those who had lost a primary caregiver during the pandemic.

  • About 1 in 500 children had experienced "COVID-19-associated orphanhood or death of a grandparent caregiver."

Details: The study estimates that more than 120,000 children lost a primary caregiver, referring to a parent or grandparent that provided housing, basic needs and care.

  • Over 22,000 children lost a secondary caregiver, referring to grandparents who provided housing but not most basic needs.

Between the lines: There is no federal data available for how many children went into foster care during the pandemic. It is estimated that the pandemic caused a 15% increase in orphaned children, AP reports.

The big picture: A study published in July by the journal The Lancet found that more than 1.5 million children around the world lost a caregiver during the first 14 months of the pandemic.

What they're saying: "Children facing orphanhood as a result of COVID is a hidden, global pandemic that has sadly not spared the United States," Susan Hillis, a researcher for the CDC and lead study author, said in a statement.

  • "All of us — especially our children — will feel the serious immediate and long-term impact of this problem for generations to come," Hillis added.
  • "Addressing the loss that these children have experienced — and continue to experience — must be one of our top priorities, and it must be woven into all aspects of our emergency response, both now and in the post-pandemic future."
  • "[W]e must address the many underlying inequities and health disparities that put people of color at greater risk of getting COVID-19 and dying from COVID-19, which puts children of color at a greater risk of losing a parent or caregiver and related adverse effects on their development," said Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

Go deeper

Oct 18, 2021 - Axios Twin Cities

Minnesota offers cash and chance at $100K scholarship as vaccine incentive for teens

Expand chart
Data: Minnesota COVID-19 Response; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

Minnesota is offering new incentives to shot-wary teens in an effort to boost the state's COVID-19 vaccination rates.

Driving the news: 12 to 17 year olds who get both doses over the next six weeks will receive a $200 Visa gift card, Gov. Tim Walz's administration announced Monday.

  • Kids vaccinated during this period can also enter a lottery for one of five $100,000 scholarships to attend any of the state's public or private colleges or universities.

Why it matters: Public health officials say increasing vaccination rates among young Minnesotans is key to curbing spread of the virus, especially in schools.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Congressman criminally charged with lying to feds

Rep. Jeff Fortenberry. Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-Neb.) has been indicted on charges he falsified records and lied to federal investigators probing an illegal foreign donation scheme, the Justice Department announced on Tuesday.

Driving the news: DOJ says a Fortenberry associate, who later cooperated with investigators, informed him he'd likely received illegal donations from an intermediary for a foreign national, but that Fortenberry denied any knowledge of such a scheme when contacted by the FBI.

"Assassin's Creed," but for schools

"Viking Age: Discovery Tour." Image via Ubisoft

For the third time since 2018, Ubisoft is releasing a nonviolent version of its latest “Assassin’s Creed” game as part of a unique effort to turn one of the medium’s most popular series into an educational tool.

Driving the news:Viking Age: Discovery Tour” transforms last year’s “Assassin’s Creed Valhalla” from a bloody 150-hour game about Viking conquest in 9th century England into a peaceful four-hour game about merchants and monks.