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Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Young adults, especially those with pre-existing conditions, can still have very serious cases of the coronavirus, a new study published yesterday in JAMA Internal Medicine confirms.

Why it matters: As thousands of college students around the country catch the virus, some of them are bound to require hospitalization and, tragically, perhaps even die in the coming weeks.

By the numbers: Among adult coronavirus patients discharged from the hospital between April 1 and June 30, 5% were non-pregnant young adults between the ages of 18 and 34.

  • 57.6% of these patients were men, and 57% were Black or Latino.
  • More than a third had obesity, a quarter had morbid obesity, 18% had diabetes and 16% had hypertension.
  • 21% required intensive care while hospitalized, 10% required a ventilator, and 2.7% died.

What we're watching: Most college students who get the virus will be fine, but we're most likely going to start seeing tragic headlines soon.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect that the journal that published the study was JAMA Internal Medicine. 

Go deeper

Dec 18, 2020 - Health

Italy orders holiday season coronavirus lockdown

Two soldiers wearing face masks patrol Duomo Square in Milan, Italy on Dec. 13. Photo: Andrea Verdelli/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Italy's Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte announced Friday that he has ordered a national lockdown for the Christmas and New Year's holidays as the country continues to see a surge in cases and deaths.

Why it matters: Italy has been one of the hardest-hit Western countries, with 67,894 coronavirus-related deaths as of Friday — the most in Europe.

Dec 18, 2020 - Health

Teachers brace for tense, stressful 2021

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

A perfect storm of quarantines, layoffs, retirements and resignations has public schools scrambling to get enough bodies to keep school afloat next semester.

Why it matters: Districts are desperate to keep classes going and are stretched thin by the sometimes competing needs of in-person and distance learning.

Dec 19, 2020 - Politics & Policy

FDA authorizes Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use

Photo: Robin Utrecht/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration has issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine, one day after it was endorsed by a panel of independent experts.

Why it matters: The authorization of a second coronavirus vaccine, coming exactly one week after the FDA cleared Pfizer-BioNTech's vaccine for emergency use, increases vaccine access for millions of Americans and marks another milestone on the country’s path to curbing the pandemic.