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After weeks (or months, in some states) of declines in COVID-19 caseloads and related hospitalizations and deaths, more than half of U.S. states reported an increase in the number of infected residents, with hospitalizations following suit in 10 states according to data collected by The New York Times. Cases are up 10% nationally over the past 2 weeks. In spite of that, however, hospitalizations are down nationally by 17% and there has been no increase in COVID deaths. The BA.2 subvariant continues to be blamed for the majority of new cases (72%). Not coincidentally, Philadelphia just announced a return to public space mask mandates. Given greater public awareness of the symptoms of the virus combined with “COVID fatigue,” confidence that vaccinated individuals will not become seriously ill, and ample availability of home testing, it’s almost certain that caseloads are underestimated. As such, consider maintaining an aggressive stance toward testing when patients present with symptoms suspicious for COVID-19, and ensure your staff remains vigilant when it comes to reducing risk for spread in your urgent care center.

COVID-19 Reverses Trend (Again) with Rising Cases and Hospitalizations