COVID news has remained relatively gloomy whether it’s news of an Omicron surge, Flurona (testing positive for COVID and the flu at the same time), Deltacron (a hybrid of the Delta and Omicron variant) or the rise in COVID-related hospitalizations. However, the latest Omicron developments are proving to be encouraging.
New COVID-19 cases are plummeting in a growing list of places, according to The New York Times. Statistics show that percentage of cases causing severe illness is much lower than it was during the surge of the Delta variant. The data also shows that vaccines — particularly after a booster shot — are doing their job and remain extremely effective in preventing hospitalization and death.
So what exactly does the latest data show?
1. Cases are plunging
New cases in Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey and New York have fallen by more than 30 percent since early last week, according to data provided by Kinsa, a San Francisco company that tracks how many Americans have a fever everyday. In Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania cases are down 10 percent. The data also shows that COVID cases in California have peaked.
“Let’s be clear on this — we are winning,” Mayor Eric Adams of New York said yesterday. Kathy Hochul, the governor of New York State, said during a budget speech, “We hope to close the books on this winter surge soon.”
If anything, the official COVID numbers probably understate the actual declines, because test results are often a few days behind reality, The Times reports.
This type of data suggests that we may be on the verge of Omicron’s retreat.
2. Hospital data also shows promise
South Africa, Britain and several other countries followed an Omicron pattern that included a rapid surge that lasted for about a month, followed by a rapid decline — first in cases, then hospitalizations and lastly deaths. Data suggests that the U.S. may be heading down that same path.
Despite many hospitals still coping with a large number of patients, the number of people hospitalized with COVID have begun to decline over the past few days.
In Utah, the percentage of cases leading to hospitalization among vaccinated patients has been only about half as high in recent weeks as it was last summer.
3. COVID risk factors are low
A team of British researchers led by Dr. Julia Hippisley-Cox of the University of Oxford created an online calculator that allows you to