COVID Cases Rising in About Half of States COVID Cases Rising in About Half of States

Though overall COVID-19 case counts continue to drop nationally, that’s not the story in every U.S. state. 

About half the states have reported increases in COVID cases fueled by the Omicron subvariant, Axios reported. Alaska, Vermont, and Rhode Island had the highest increases, with more than 20 new cases per 100,000 people. 

Nationally, the statistics are encouraging, with the 7-day average of daily cases around 26,000 on Wednesday, down from around 41,000 on March 6, according to the CDC. The number of deaths has dropped to an average of around 600 a day, down 34% from 2 weeks ago.

National health officials have said some spots would have a lot of COVID cases.

“Looking across the country, we see that 95% of counties are reporting low COVID-19 community levels, which represent over 97% of the U.S. population,” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, MD, said Tuesday at a White House news briefing.

“If we look more closely at the local level, we find a handful of counties where we are seeing increases in both cases and markers of more severe disease, like hospitalizations and in-patient bed capacity, which have resulted in an increased COVID-19 community level in some areas.”

Meanwhile, the Commonwealth Fund issued a report Friday saying the U.S. vaccine program had prevented an estimated 2.2 million deaths and 17 million hospitalizations.

If the vaccine program didn’t exist, the U.S. would have had another 66 million COVID infections and spent about $900 billion more on health care, the foundation said.

The U.S. has reported about 982,000 COVID-related deaths so far with about 80 million COVID cases, according to the CDC.

“Our findings highlight the profound and ongoing impact of the vaccination program in reducing infections, hospitalizations, and deaths,” the Commonwealth Fund said.

“Investing in vaccination programs also has produced substantial cost savings — approximately the size of one-fifth of annual national health expenditures — by dramatically reducing the amount spent on COVID-19 hospitalizations.”

Sources:

Axios: “COVID cases rise again in half the states.”

The White House: “Press Briefing by White House COVID-19 Response Team and HHS Public Health Officials,” April 5, 2022.

The Commonwealth Fund: “Impact of U.S. COVID-19 Vaccination Efforts: An Update on Averted Deaths, Hospitalizations, and Health Care Costs Through March 2022.”