National numbers, Feb. 28

After several weeks of declines, cases now appear to be in a plateau. But the COVID Tracking Project cautions that these numbers may also be the aftershocks of President’s Day and the winter storm, which led to artificially low numbers last week and delayed reporting arriving this week. One thing is for certain, though: vaccinations are recovering from the storm. We had two record vaccination days Friday and yesterday.

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National numbers, Feb. 21

The number of COVID-19 patients in U.S. hospitals is now the lowest it’s been since early November. About 7,000 new patients were admitted each day this week—while this is still a huge number, it’s a notable drop from the peak (18,000 per day) we saw earlier in the winter.

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National numbers, Feb. 14

The 7-day average for new cases was under 100,000 this week for the first time since October—but it’s still far above the records that America set during our spring and summer surges. n White House briefings this week, CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said that it will take a unified effort for us to continue this trend, especially as coronavirus variants pose an increased threat.

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National numbers, Feb. 7

This is the first week in which America has reported fewer than 1 million new COVID-19 cases since Thanksgiving. Also, per the COVID Tracking Project, the number of Americans in the hospital with COVID-19 has decreased for 25 days in a row. Bloomberg reported a record 2.1 million vaccine doses yesterday. Whichever metric you look at, the news is good.

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National numbers, Jan. 31

As of January 30, the number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 is under 100,000 for the first time since December 1. Still, this current number is about 60% higher than the peak number of patients hospitalized during either of the U.S.’s previous surges last spring and summer (60,000).

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National numbers, Jan. 24

Two major metrics, new cases and current hospitalizations, are down for the second week in a row. (See the numbers trending down on the COVID Tracking Project chart, above.) The number of new cases reported this week is the lowest it’s been since Thanksgiving. And, while well over 100,000 Americans are in the hospital with COVID-19, we are seeing about 17,000 fewer patients nationwide than we did two weeks ago.

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National numbers, Jan. 17

Two weeks out from New Years (and the subsequent reporting weirdness), cases seem to be stabilizing, somewhat. But “stabilizing,” at this point in the pandemic, still means ridiculous numbers. 220,000 new cases each day! That’s like the population of Baton Rouge, Louisiana getting diagnosed with COVID-19 every day.

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National numbers, Jan. 10

The nation is now recording an average of 3,000 deaths every day, more than the number of lives lost on September 11, 2001. Yet cases are still rising—the COVID Tracking Project reported a record 310,000 on January 8—and hospitals continue to fill with patients.

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National numbers, Jan. 3

20 states didn’t update their COVID-19 data on December 25, and 24 didn’t update their data on January 1—followed by a record day with 276,000 cases reported on January 2. As I’ve noted in previous issues, reporting gaps over holidays lead to spikes several days later, as states catch up on the cases, deaths, and tests that took place over their break.

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National numbers, Dec. 27

The COVID Tracking Project noted that 20 states did not report COVID-19 data on December 25. The true impact of over a million people traveling will not be seen in the data for weeks to come. But while public health agencies may take a day off, hospitals never close. This week, more Americans were hospitalized with COVID-19 than ever: the number peaked on December 24, at over 120,000. That’s double the highest national patient number we saw in the spring or summer.

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