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Covid hospitalizations from delta variant creep up again across America as omicron lands in U.S.

Andrew Pawson (age 30, coronavirus positive) in recovery from over a month spent in isolation wards holds his hand to his wife Isobel, inside his room at Memorial Hospital Rexburg in Idaho. October 28, 2021.

Shannon Stapleton | Reuters

Despite the fact that Covid-19 hospitalizations continue to rise across the country, U.S. officials are still trying to address the problem. first patient infected with the omicron variant.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it’s still too early for the omicron virus to impact hospitalizations or case numbers in the United States. The delta variant accounts for over 99% of new cases. Although it is far away from the peak of the Delta Wave in September, where more than 100,000 were hospitalized for the disease, serious cases are beginning to creep back up thanks to the colder North and the gatherings that take place on major U.S. holidays.

A seven-day average of data from Department of Health and Human Services through Wednesday shows that approximately 56,000 Americans are being treated with Covid-19. That’s an increase of 8 percent over the week before and 20% above the nation’s lowest point of Nov. 10.

After the latest spike in infected patients, hospitalizations have been on the rise. Johns Hopkins University data shows that the average daily number of cases reached a peak at over 172,000 cases in mid-September, then dropped sharply to an average level of between 75,000 and 70,000 new cases each day for three weeks. The cases rose again and reached an average of almost 96,000 daily on Nov. 24, just before Thanksgiving holidays interrupted data reporting in many states.

According to a report by a, the majority of states failed to report any Thanksgiving-related deaths or cases. list maintained by HopkinsMany states delayed reporting over the weekend. Add to that the fact many states also have scaled back their daily Covid data reportsLocal agencies may take up to a week to complete testing and to notify new cases. 

This is how reported Covid deaths and cases in state and national Covid states and countries typically fall sharply after holidays, and then rise as backlogs are cleared. As of Wednesday afternoon, however, there were only 86,000 reported daily Covid cases in the United States. It is expected that this number will increase over the following week.

The historical trend of hospitalizations which count the patients who are in bed with Covid has been to be more stable over holidays and less affected by reports interruptions.

According to Dr. Bruce Y. Lee (Professor of Health Policy and Management, City University of New York School of Public Health), the latest outbreak was caused by colder temperatures, which push people inside, dry air, holidays, and partying. According to Dr. Bruce Y. Lee, some Americans who became ill from Covid during the outbreak or had their vaccinations in spring but have not received a booster may have diminished immunity.

However, U.S. vaccination rates are increasing, though at a slower speed. According to CDC data from Tuesday, almost 60% Americans were fully vaccinated. Since early August, when the number reached 50%, however, it’s been close to four months. The nation went from 40% to half-way in just two months, and it took less than a month for them to reach 40%.

“Our vaccination numbers haven’t been as high as they could be. I feel that we now face an uncertain future, where many people not currently vaccinated are not planning to do so,” Dr. Lisa Maragakis (senior director of infection prevention, The Johns Hopkins Health System) said.

That will make it harder for the U.S. to get Covid to a place where it is “endemic,” Maragakis explained, which would mean that it is not totally eradicated but becomes more manageable and part of the respiratory viruses that the country deals with on a yearly basis.

“That will not be true as long we have large pockets unvaccinated persons,” she said.

These trends existed before the advent of news. omicron variantSouth Africa reported the news about one week ago. Lee said that the U.S. has not yet made any changes to the way it should mitigate Covid risks as scientists continue to investigate the transmissibility of the strain and whether or not they may be able to cause severe illness. 

He said, “It’s an reminder that we must retain all of these precautions because we believed a winter surge would be coming anyway.” The key to preventing the spread of the virus is still getting vaccinated, receiving booster shots and wearing masks.

The current pandemic has regional variations, as has the past. Hotspots are moving from the U.S. South where the Delta wave struck the hardest and earliest over the summer to the Midwest. According to a population adjusted basis, hospitalizations have risen 31% in the Midwestern States over the last two weeks.

Maragakis said that while some regions aren’t feeling the effects, others are. “But, I know from personal experience, whether it is in Utah, Michigan, and other states, there are people in crisis.”

According to CNBC’s analysis of HHS data, Michigan has the most Covid hospitalizations per capita. This is due to the more than 4300 Covid patients it houses. According to Dr. Darryl Elmouchi of Spectrum Health West Michigan (a 14-hospital system located in the western part of the state), the wave has proved more difficult than other surges due to its size, staffing problems, and length.

Spectrum Health’s 464 Covid patients as of Wednesday were the highest number in the system. Hospitals are so full, it is difficult to move patients to other beds.

Elmouchi reported that the majority of Covid patients are not vaccinated. This was 91% at late last week. Although there are still cases of severe infections and some rarer ones, these are not enough to warrant critical care.

Spectrum Health had 140 Covid-related deaths in November. It was a significant number, but less than December 2012’s record of 192. This year has seen a greater level of hospitalizations.

In response to an emergency, the federal government sent two Department of Defense Medical Teams to Michigan. request from Gov. Gretchen WhitmerSpectrum Health will need additional staffing.

The national Covid statistics will not show any effect of Thanksgiving-related virus transmission until then. Due to data reporting problems around holidays it may take up to four weeks to detect and report infections. The time taken for symptoms to manifest, a positive test to confirm, and cases to be published by the state or local system, Lee estimates.

U.S. Covid deaths and cases hit peak levels after 2020 holidays, with an average of over 250,000 infected people and 3400 deaths per day by January 2021.

Mike Robinson
Mike covers the financial, utilities and biotechnology sectors for Street Register. He has been writing about investment and personal finance topics for almost 12 years. Mike has an MBA in Finance from Wake Forest University.