New cases of COVID19 in the United States that have been fueled by the deadly delta variant in summer have started to decline a month ago. Health experts have thought that the misery brought by the concerning variant is going to be over. However, as people in the US start traveling this week to meet their dear and loved ones to celebrate Thanksgiving, the cases of the SARS-CoV-2 virus have started to shoot up again. Health officials have said that the surge in new cases has been more frequent in Northeast and upper Midwest regions. As per the report, teams of federal medical professionals have been sent to Minnesota to assist hospitals that are dealing with an overwhelming number of cases. Experts have said that at present, Michigan is witnessing its worst surge in COVID19 cases. The data shows that the number of daily new cases is increasing twofold since the beginning of November.
In New England, where the rate of vaccination is quite high, cases continue to rise. Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine as well are trying hard to contain huge COVID19 outbreaks. Health officials have said that in the early weeks of September, the caseload at the national level has remained on the lower side, however, now, the conditions have started deteriorating much faster. They have said that this might not be the post-pandemic Thanksgiving that people have been hoping for. The officials have said that the country is now reporting more than 90000 COVID19 cases each day, which is comparable to the caseload that has been seen in August. In the US, more than 30 states are witnessing a continued uptick in new COVID19 cases. Hospitalizations linked to COVID19 as well are increasing in places that are hardest hit by COVID19. A public health scientist from the University of Minnesota, Michael Osterholm has said that the SARS-CoV-2 virus has been defying all predictions and it will dodge all forecasts in the future as well.
Last year, prior to the availability of COVID19 shots in the US, federal and local health officials have urged people living in the US to give a miss to holiday gatherings. However, this year, public health experts along with infectious disease expert, Anthony Fauci have said that people who have been immunized against COVID19 can plan a get-together with moderate safety. Health experts have claimed that despite the surge, the country is in much better condition as compared to what it has been facing last year. Apart from COVID19 shots, doctors are now much aware of the treatment of the disease, they expect that soon there will be an antiviral pill to treat the disease as the US food and Drug Administration (FDA) gives a sanction to it. Many people in the US have been immunized with COVID19 shots against the virus. Booster shots for all adults as well have been authorized by federal health officials. These developments have instilled confidence in many people and they have said that they are planning to celebrate the holiday season with their relatives and loved ones.
On the other hand, tens of thousands of people in the US have refused to be vaccinated against COVID19. Nearly 50000 patients who have been down with severe COVID19 disease have been admitted to hospitals at present. In Europe, Austria has imposed a lockdown and some regions of Germany have closed all Christmas markets. These reports have increased concerns about how high the number of COVID19 cases will go during the holiday season in the United States. As per the data, nearly 66 percent of the population in Austria has been immunized against the deadly virus, whereas the United States has been able to vaccinate around 59 percent of its population. Federal health officials hope that air travel during thanksgiving might go back to the pre-pandemic level. They think that many people who are going to travel by road might be unvaccinated, without facemasks, and not concerned about the viral infection.
Many health leaders have said that as authorities have given a go-ahead to pediatric COVID19 shot for children in the age range of 5 years to 11 years and due to the vast availability of home testing kits, people who are immunized feel safe to host holiday gatherings. However, hosting gatherings during the holiday season is not fully risk-free, said the experts. The rate of new infection in Illinois has increased to 62 percent, as per a new report. Experts have said that people who are still not immunized are at a huge risk of contracting the virus in the forthcoming holiday season. People who have taken the shots are at very low risk of getting admitted to hospitals or dying due to breakthrough infections irrespective of whether they have received booster shots or not.
Many people who have been interviewed by the experts have expressed their exhaustion and irritation that COVID19 is still a matter of concern in this holiday season when vaccines are widely accessible. People feel they are safe, as they have been vaccinated in New Mexico where around 1400 new cases of coronavirus per day are being reported on average. As per the latest data, the number of new cases has shot up by more than 40 percent in Pennsylvania. The reports of fresh cases in Massachusetts have gone up by 80 percent. New cases have increased by 70 percent in Indiana. The rates of infections are constantly high in much of Western regions such as Arizona and New Mexico. Experts have revealed that along with the rate of infections, hospitalization is also on the rise in Midwestern states. The COVID19 condition in Wyoming and Alaska has improved a little after these states have seen massive outbreaks. The rate of infection in California is comparatively low and the condition of the Southern region as well is a little better.
Health officials from Michigan have advised that people should wear face masks at indoor gatherings irrespective of their vaccination status to protect themselves from COVID19 and flu infection. Health officials from Vermont have said that children who have not been immunized against COVID19 should use masks during the gathering if they are celebrating Thanksgiving with their grandparents. Governor of New York, Kathy Hochul has said that no one wants to adhere to COVID19 guidelines anymore. Her state has been witnessing a more than 50 percent increase in the number of new cases for the last two weeks. She has said that even after conducting a rigorous vaccination drive; it is not advisable to say that it is fully safe to host large gatherings.