July 26,2023 -- The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 is up 10% in the United States, the sharpest uptick since December, according to the CDC.
In the week starting July 15, 7,109 patients with COVID-19 were admitted to hospitals nationwide, the CDC said. That’s up from 6,444 in the prior week.
Another important figure has been on the increase, too – the percentage of people who visited emergency rooms with COVID-19. CBS News said an average of 0.73% of the past week's emergency room visits had COVID-19 as of July 21, up from 0.49% through June 21.
The country had seen a reduction of COVID-19 indicators since last winter.
"U.S. COVID-19 rates are still near historic lows after 7 months of steady declines,” CDC spokesperson Kathleen Conley said in a statement. “Early indicators of COVID-19 activity (emergency department visits, test positivity and wastewater levels) preceded an increase in hospitalizations seen this past week.”
She said most of the country is at low hospital admission levels, not reaching the point at which the CDC urges extra precautions to slow the spread of the virus.
It was a different story at this time last year. CBS News said, “July 2022 peaked at more than 44,000 weekly hospitalizations and 5% of emergency room visits with COVID-19 during a summer surge that strained many hospitals.”
Conley pointed out that the country has seen increases in COVID-19 over the last three summers, so the current increases are not surprising.
There’s not one variant dominating infections so far this year.