Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor falsely claimed that 100,000 children are in “serious condition” from Covid during oral arguments on the Biden administration’s employer vaccine mandate on Friday.
“We have hospitals that are almost at full capacity with people severely ill on ventilators. We have over 100,000 children, which we’ve never had before, in serious condition, and many on ventilators,” Sotomayor claimed.
The current number of confirmed pediatric hospitalizations with Covid in the U.S. is 3,342, according to data from the Department of Health and Human Services released on Friday. The average number of children admitted to the hospital per day with Covid was 776 as of Tuesday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Additionally, the total number of children hospitalized with Covid from August 2020 through January 4, 2022 is 81,923, the CDC states.
CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said in a statement on Friday that “pediatric hospitalizations are at their highest rate compared to any prior point in the pandemic.” However, Walensky also told reporters that CDC data on pediatric Covid hospitalizations included some patients who were admitted to the hospital for a separate issue.
Sotomayor’s comments came as the Court heard arguments on the Biden administration’s employer vaccine mandate, which states that businesses with 100 or more employees must require Covid vaccinations for all workers and weekly testing for those workers who do not get vaccinated. Challengers claim that the agency charged with developing and enforcing the mandate, the Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration, does not have the Constitutional authority to do so.