ED visits for COVID-19 fall for 4th consecutive week: 4 CDC updates

The percentage of positive COVID-19 tests and outpatient visits related to the virus have steadily decreased since mid-July, according to the CDC's weekly COVIDView report

Four updates:

1. Surveillance: The percentage of laboratory specimens testing positive for COVID-19 decreased nationwide for the week ending Aug. 8. This figure has decreased or held steady in nine of 10 HHS surveillance regions. Only the New York/New Jersey/Puerto Rico region reported a slight increase in the percentage of positive specimens.

2. Mortality: About 8.1 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 144.1 hospitalizations per 100,000 population. 

4. Outpatient activity: Emergency department and outpatient visits for symptoms related to COVID-19 or flu remained below baseline. 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 fourth straight week and in all 10 regions compared to a week prior. 

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