Covid-19 Infection Rises With Reopenings

Covid-19 Infection Rises With Reopenings

Those who alleged social distancing did not reduce infections obviously did not know what they were talking about. 

On Wednesday morning, the Washington Post reported that hospitalizations in at least nine states are on the rise.

In Texas, North and South Carolina, California, Oregon, Arkansas, Mississippi, Utah and Arizona, there are an increasing number of patients under supervised care since the holiday weekend because of coronavirus infections. The spikes generally began in the past couple weeks and in most states are trending higher.

Data from states that are now reporting some of their highest seven-day averages of new cases is disproving the notion that the country is seeing such a spike in cases solely because of the continued increase in testing, according to data tracked by The Washington Post.

The sheer number of states that have reported rebounds suggests that the increase in new cases can’t be attributed (at least, not entirely) to an expansion of testing. Anybody who has been paying attention to the numbers out of Texas probably notice that the state has reported several record daily totals of new cases. Texas has reported 75,616 cases since the pandemic began, but during 10 of the past 15 days, the state’s 7-day average (a metric that’s preferred to the un-smoothed daily data) reached new highs.

One reason that the jump in hospitalizations may have been overlooked until now is because those numbers are difficult to track, since not all states release the numbers, and reporting criteria vary from state to state.

That this is happening in Texas is important, since the state embraced an aggressive reopening timeline, just like Georgia did, and for a time, it looked like these decisions might pan out. Now, journalists and ‘experts’ are apparently revisiting that view.

North Carolina has reported the second-largest spike in hospitalizations (behind Texas) since Memorial Day, though NC’s trend began before the holiday weekend. On May 26, the state reported 621 hospitalizations, but two weeks later, that number had climbed to 774.

In South Carolina, hospitalizations have increased sharply since the start of the week. In the span of just a day, there have been 30 new hospitalizations, a 6% jump in total capacity, according to the state’s health department. In Utah, new cases are on the rise, and so are hospitalizations. Like other states, Utah has seen newly reported cases climb since MDW, with the average number of new cases increasing in 12 of the past 15 days. Over that two-week span, Utah has reported a 42% jump in hospitalizations, with 230 patients hospitalized with the condition as of Tuesday afternoon.

During an interview on CNBC’s “Squawk Box”, former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, who has been warning about the uptick in new cases and hospitalizations for at least the past week, warned that Texas is going to need to devise a new intervention plan if it wants to avoid another round of lockdowns.

“Texas is going to have to figure out how to target interventions…remember they’re in phase 3 of reopening and they’re reopening everything…but the state has already been open a while…they’re going to have to figure out where the spread is occurring and take more mitigation steps,” Dr. Gottlieb said.

Whatever it decides, Texas – particularly the area around Houston where the outbreak is most severe – needs to get its arms around this thing soon, or it could lose control.

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