DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — We have all heard the saying, “COVID doesn’t impact children as much as adults, so why should it matter?” One Pediatrician in the Wiregrass is pleading with parents to take the virus more seriously as more kids are testing positive for the virus.

Doctor Jeff Tamburin with Dothan Pediatric Clinic said it’s true, in most cases, children won’t end up in the hospital due to COVID, but with that being said, Dr. Tamburin knows there are exceptions to the case.

“Currently at Children’s Hospital in Birmingham, there are 22 patients admitted with COVID and five of them are on ventilators. While most kids are going to have a binary course, the number is not zero,” Dr. Tamburin said.

Tamburin said the clinic started testing for COVID in March of 2020. According to Tamburin, just two weeks ago they had 20 percent more positive COVID cases than during the whole pandemic.

He said when a child tests positive it often leads them to miss school or parents having to miss work, which could have a major impact on everyone involved.

“In the middle of Summer, we were seeing five-six a week amongst our whole network of five clinics,” Dr. Tamburin said. “We are now pushing 200, and last week we might have actually went over. I just don’t have those numbers yet, it has been a dramatic increase.”

Dr. Tamburin understands how this could be a very scary time for some parents. This is why he encourages them to give their office a call if they believe their child is experiencing any COVID-like symptoms.

This dramatic increase is why Tamburin is begging parents to take the Delta variant seriously and get vaccinated. He said kids are experiencing major problems from COVID at this point in the pandemic now more than ever.

“We are seeing that nationally the amount of children getting it,” Dr. Tamburin said .”Right now about 15 percent of all positive COVID cases are pediatric cases. We are seeing the number of admissions rise.”