National numbers, February 13

Current COVID-19 hospitalizations in the U.S. have fallen under 100,000 for the first time since the Omicron surge started. Chart by Conor Kelly, posted on Twitter on February 9.

In the past week (February 5 through 11), the U.S. reported about 1.5 million new COVID-19 cases, according to the CDC. This amounts to:

  • An average of 215,000 new cases each day
  • 459 total new cases for every 100,000 Americans
  • One in 218 Americans testing positive for COVID-19
  • 43% fewer new cases than last week (January 29-February 4)

Last week, America also saw:

  • 85,000 new COVID-19 patients admitted to hospitals (26 for every 100,000 people)
  • 16,000 new COVID-19 deaths (4.9 for every 100,000 people)
  • 100% of new cases are Omicron-caused (as of February 5)
  • An average of 300,000 vaccinations per day (per Bloomberg)

COVID-19 cases continue to decline across the U.S. as the country comes out of its Omicron surge. Nationwide, the U.S. reported an average of 215,000 new cases a day last week—a drop of about 75% from the peak of the Omicron surge, when nearly 800,000 new cases were reported each day.

Hospitalizations are also decreasing: this week, the number of confirmed and suspected COVID-19 patients in U.S. hospitals dropped under 100,000 for the first time since the surge started in December. Deaths are decreasing as well, but are still at high levels: over 2,000 Americans are dying of COVID-19 each day.

All 50 states and the majority of counties continue to report case declines, according to the latest Community Profile Report. But case rates are still very high across the country, well above the CDC’s threshold for high transmission (more on this later in the issue).

States with high case rates this week include Alaska, Kentucky, West Virginia, Montana, Mississippi, North Dakota, California, and Idaho; all reported over 700 new cases for every 100,000 residents in the week ending February 9.

Omicron is still causing 100% of new cases in the country, according to CDC estimates. But the agency is now splitting its estimates into the original Omicron and its sister strain BA.2: BA.2 caused between 2% and 7% of new cases nationwide in the week ending February 5, the CDC says. In the coming weeks, we’ll see whether this strain—which is even more transmissible than original Omicron—has an impact on U.S. case numbers.

New vaccination numbers have been fairly low for the past couple of weeks, with an average of under 300,000 shots given each day (including boosters). And the FDA is now delaying vaccine authorization for children under age 5: the agency has decided to wait for Pfizer to provide data on how well a three-dose series performs in this age group, after initially considering authorization based on data about two doses.

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