COVID cases, hospitalizations on the rise despite the vaccination rate

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More than 66 million Americans are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19 – but cases and hospitalizations continue to rise, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have warned.

As of Friday, more than 112 million people across the United States – or 33.7% of the population – received at least one dose of the vaccine, while 66.2 million people – or 19.9% ​​of the population – were fully inoculated, according to CDC data. .

That means “more than a quarter of all adult Americans who are now fully vaccinated,” White House coronavirus response coordinator Jeff Zients said during a virtual press briefing on Friday.

But even as more and more Americans are trapped, the pandemic still rages on.

The current seven-day average of new cases is up about 2% from the previous seven-day period – to more than 64,000 per day, CDC director Dr Rochelle Walensky said at the briefing .

People walk past a sign indicating both a Covid-19 testing clinic and a Covid vaccination location outside a Brooklyn hospital on March 29, 2021.
People walk past a sign indicating both a COVID-19 testing clinic and a COVID vaccination location outside a Brooklyn hospital on March 29, 2021.
Spencer Platt / Getty Images

About 74,860 new cases of coronavirus were reported in the United States on Thursday, she added.

Hospital admissions linked to COVID-19 are increasing even faster.

The seven-day average of hospitalizations nationwide has climbed to about 5,300 – an increase of about 7 percent from the previous seven-day period, according to CDC data.

“On the one hand, we have so much to be optimistic and hopeful about and more and more Americans are being vaccinated and protected against COVID-19,” Walensky said. “On the other hand, cases and emergency room visits are on the rise.”

The CDC director explained that the increase in cases is due to young adults, “most of whom have not yet been vaccinated.”

The rise in infections has also been “amplified in parts of the country such as the Upper Midwest,” she added.

A nurse fills a syringe with a dose of the one-dose COVID-19 vaccine from Johnson & Johnson on March 31, 2021 in Uniondale, New York.
A nurse fills a syringe with a dose of the one-dose COVID-19 vaccine from Johnson & Johnson on March 31, 2021 in Uniondale, New York.
Mary Altaffer / AP

In states like Michigan and Minnesota, there have been an increasing number of cases of the virus linked to the highly contagious British variant, known as B.1.1.7.

“In both of these states, there are concerns about transmission in youth sports, both club sports and affiliated sports in schools,” Walensky explained.

A nurse gives a man a dose of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine on February 11, 2021 in Houston, Texas.
A nurse gives a man a dose of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine on February 11, 2021 in Houston, Texas.
Brett Coomer / Houston Chronicle via AP

“What is happening in Minnesota and Michigan is similar to what we are seeing across the country – more and more cases associated with youth sports.”

But, she added, “I want to be clear as cases increase in the community, we would expect cases identified in schools to increase as well. This does not necessarily indicate transmission in the school environment. “

Meanwhile, on the vaccine front, the United States now averages 3 million vaccines per day, up from 2.9 million last week, Zients said.

In total, more than 28 million vaccines have been delivered to states, tribes and territories through federal channels this week alone, he noted.

This is “more than enough supply to maintain and increase our current seven-day average of 3 million shots per day,” Zients insisted.

But to tackle the unwanted rise in cases, the federal government will prioritize and increase resources to hard-hit states.

A woman enters the Javits Center on March 31, 2021 in New York City, where vaccines are administered.
A woman enters the Javits Center on March 31, 2021, in New York City, where vaccines are administered.
Corbis via Getty Images

The federal government will work with the states “to make sure they use all of the doses they have received,” Zients said.

“Today millions of doses have been distributed, but have yet to be administered in the form of gunfire.”

A nurse inoculates a woman with COVID-19 at a dose of Johnson & Johnson in Uniondale, New York on March 31, 2021.
A nurse inoculates a woman with COVID-19 at a dose of Johnson & Johnson in Uniondale, New York on March 31, 2021.
Mary Altaffer / AP

In addition, the federal government will “call on” personnel, including CDC response teams, in those states “to support vaccination efforts and get more shots in the guns,” build testing capacity and provide more “therapies and treatments,” the White House coronavirus response coordinator said. mentionned.

“We are working to put this pandemic behind us as quickly as possible,” Zients said. “We all have to keep our guard and finish this job.”

People entering and exiting a FEMA COVID-19 vaccination site at the Northwest Community Center in Orlando, Florida.
People entering and exiting a FEMA COVID-19 vaccination site at the Northwest Community Center in Orlando, Florida.
Paul Hennessy via Getty Images

COVID-19-related deaths in the United States continue to decline, with a current seven-day average of 711, according to CDC data.

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