COVID-19 outpatient visits fall for 2nd week: 4 CDC findings

The amount of COVID-19 related visits to outpatient facilities and emergency departments decreased nationally in the week ending April 25, but still remained elevated in the Northeast and Northwest, according to the CDC's weekly COVIDView report

Four things to know:

1. The national percentage of respiratory specimens testing positive for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, decreased in public health and commercial laboratories, and remained stable in clinical labs. Nationwide, labs have confirmed 702,814 positive specimens since March 1.

2. The percentage of U.S. deaths attributed to flu, pneumonia or COVID-19 was 14.6 percent for the week ending April 25, down from 23.6 percent a week prior. This percentage still falls far above the epidemic threshold of 6.8 percent and may change as additional death certificates are processed, the CDC noted.

3. The cumulative hospitalization rate for all age groups increased to 40.4 hospitalizations per 100,000 population. 

4. The amount of outpatient and emergency department visits for COVID-19 symptoms decreased and fell below baseline for the second consecutive week. While the decrease may be due to a drop in COVID-19 activity, it may also be fueled by less respiratory illness overall due to widespread social distancing efforts and changes in how people access healthcare. 

More articles on public health:

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CMS loosens more regulations; CDC drafts reopening guidelines + 3 other COVID-19 updates

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