Michigan is currently recording the highest number of COVID-19 cases in the U.S. as several hospitals report they have reached capacity.
Over the past week, the state has reported an average of 503.8 new infections per 100,000 people according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
This is the second time this year that Michigan has led the country in cases, with the last time occurring in April, between the third and fourth surges of the pandemic.
Meanwhile, the number of COVID-19 hospitalized patients has risen more than 50 percent in the last month and at least nine hospitals are reporting that they’ve reached capacity.
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According to state data, there were 2,097 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 on October 18.
This has since risen to 3,197 as of Wednesday, a 52 percent increase.
‘The current growth in COVID-19 hospitalizations is very concerning,’ John Karasinski, a spokesman for the Michigan Health and Hospital Association, told the Detroit Free Press.
‘[Hospitals are] seeing a stark increase in hospitalizations in just the past few days… We have both this stark surge of COVID-19 patients, but we also have hospitals that have been dealing with staffing challenges and staffing shortages, as well as high volumes of non-Covid patients.
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‘And we’ve been seeing that pent-up demand of non-Covid admissions since this past summer.’
Individual hospitals are also reporting similar increases.
Dr Adnan Munkarah, executive vice president and chief clinical officer of the Henry Ford Health System, told the Free Press than 330 COVID-19 patients were admitted across its five hospitals.
This marks a 60 percent increase in the total number of patients admitted to the facility by midnight than was seen just three weeks prior.
‘We were hoping that we would be in a better situation this Thanksgiving than we were last year, especially with the availability of the vaccines,’ Munkarah told the newspaper.
‘We’ve been watching with…trepidation and worry, the number of COVID cases climb and rise throughout our community and around the state.
‘The vast majority of the patients continue to be unvaccinated patients. So when we look at general admissions for COVID, 70 to 75 percent of those patients have been unvaccinated.’
CDC data show that 59.8 percent of Michigan’s total population has received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose and 54.1 percent are fully vaccinated.
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This is behind the national averages of 68.6 percent of the U.S. population with at least one dose and 58.9 percent fully vaccinated.
Lynn Sutfin, a spokesperson for the state health department, told the Free Press that 73 percent of Covid cases across the state have been among unvaccinated or not yet fully vaccinated people.
Additionally, 69 percent of COVID-19 hospitalizations and 74 percent of deaths have been among people not fully vaccinated.
‘The majority have some other underlying complex clinical conditions that make them compromised,’ Bob Riney, Henry Ford’s chief operating officer, told the newspaper.
‘So the facts really still support that the unvaccinated population is being hit dramatically different than the vaccinated population as it relates to the activity that we’re seeing today.’
Source: Michigan is recording the most COVID-19 cases in the US (msn.com)