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COVID-19 Hospitalizations On The Rise—Again—In The United States

It looks like COVID-19 isn’t done with us yet, as hospitalizations are rising again, the Associated Press reports.

Since early July, the numbers have been climbing but not to where there is a need for high alert. For the week ending July 29, COVID-19 hospital admissions were over 9,000—a 12% increase from the previous week. With an updated vaccine on the way, experts say there isn’t a need to be on high alert as the numbers are far from what they were in July 2022—nearly 45,000. “It is ticking up a little bit, but it’s not something that we need to raise any alarm bells over,” Dr. David Dowdy, an infectious disease epidemiologist at Johns Hopkins, said.

If you’re wondering what may be causing the sudden rise, health officials say the COVID-19 virus in sewage water has increased since late June across the country. As the 2023-2024 school year is around the corner, experts are closely monitoring wastewater levels. Cristin Young, an epidemiologist at Biobot Analytics and a CDC wastewater surveillance contractor, says COVID-19 shows high levels in the northeast and southern wastewater concentrations. “It’s important to remember right now the concentrations are still fairly low,” Young said. But with a new variant, omicron EG.5, slowly creeping up, the epidemiologist claims his radar is up.

“There are a couple that we’re watching, but we’re not seeing anything like delta or omicron.”

There are certain hot spots on the rise. According to The Hill, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Montana, and more have seen more than a 20% increase in new COVID hospitalizations. New Hampshire saw the largest increase in a week, jumping to 96%. Jill Rosenthal, director of public health policy at the Center for American Progress, says she isn’t surprised with the number increase as that’s been the summer pattern. “We have had a summer wave of COVID for the last few summers, and so it’s not surprising to see an increase in COVID right now,” Rosenthal said.

The CDC is hoping to have updated vaccines by fall 2023.

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