4 Midwestern states see rise in positive COVID-19 tests: 4 CDC updates

The percentage of positive COVID-19 tests has decreased nationally since mid-July, but is steadily rising in some Midwestern states, according to the CDC's weekly COVIDView report

Four updates:

1. Surveillance: The percentage of laboratory specimens testing positive for COVID-19 with a molecular assay decreased nationwide for the week ending Aug. 15. This figure has decreased or held steady in nine of 10 HHS surveillance regions. The central region, which includes Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Nebraska, has seen the percentage of positive specimens increase for 10 weeks.

2. Mortality: About 7.8 percent of deaths nationwide were attributed to flu, pneumonia or COVID-19 in the week ending Aug. 8. This figure marks a decline from the week prior but is still above the epidemic threshold. 

3. Hospitalizations: The cumulative hospitalization rate for all age groups increased to 151.7 per 100,000 population in the week ending Aug. 15. This rate accounts for all confirmed COVID-19 hospitalizations since March 1. Weekly hospitalization rates peaked the week ending April 18 at 10.1 per 100,000 population. A second peak occurred the week ending July 18 at 8 per 100,000 population. 

4. Outpatient activity: Emergency department and outpatient visits for symptoms related to COVID-19 or flu remained below baseline nationwide. However, flu-like activity is still higher than typical for this time of year. The percentage of ED visits for COVID-19-like symptoms also decreased nationally for the fifth straight week.

More articles on public health:

26 states where COVID-19 is spreading fastest, slowest: Aug. 24
Massachusetts first state to make flu shot mandatory for students
Where new COVID-19 cases are rising, falling, staying the same: Aug. 21

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