A 14-year-old student in her freshman year at South Caldwell High School is the county’s first confirmed child hospitalization due to COVID-19.

The girl, who does not have underlying conditions, is currently being treated at Mission Hospital in Asheville.

The child’s mother, Chong Taylor, said her daughter was not testing positive for COVID-19 initially.

“She was tested three times and it took about a week for it to finally read positive,” she said.

“The first time we went to Urgent Care on the 7th, the test was negative and they sent us home,” Taylor said. “Then on Friday, she was having a hard time breathing so we went to Valdese Hospital and she was flown to Mission Hospital from there because her oxygen levels were really low.”

Chong says her daughter is in stable condition but is seeing a slow recovery.

“When she’s just laying there, she’s OK. But if she has to get up to do anything she’s still having a really hard time,” Chong said.

According to data from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS), children younger than 17 have accounted for nearly a third of all cases reported in the last week of August.

As of Sept. 6, 4% of newly confirmed hospitalizations are children, as opposed to 0% around this time last year, according to the data.

Libby Brown, Caldwell County Schools community services director, said the girls teacher, guidance counselor, school social worker and Caldwell County Schools Superintendent Don Phipps have all reached out to show their concerns and offer support for the family in any way they can.

The family has a GoFund me page for anyone interested in helping the family with medical costs.

Reporter Candice Simmons can be reached at (828)610-8721

Reporter Candice Simmons can be reached at (828)610-8721