CASES DEATHS CASES DEATHS
December 2020 19,111,443 341,149 2,120,610 24,241
January 26,185,362 441,319 3,310,949 40,702
February 28,602,101 513,137 3,563,578 51,953
March 30,459,874 552,072 3,668,277 59,240
April 32,225,012 574,280 3,742,115 62,078
May 33,261,284 594,468 3,789,227 63,247
June 33,624,871 603,966 3,814,890 63,569
July 34,434,136 610,859 3,903,052 64,231
August 39,057,368 638,700 4,326,204 65,757
September 43,471,906 698,149 4,720,860 69,130
October 45,979,056 746,021 4,915,796 71,950
November 48,214,360 776,586 5,060,666 74,152
December 54,859,966 825,816 5,515,250 76,520
January 74,333,528 884,265 8,292,735 79,801
February 79,025,644 949,957 8,961,636 85,043
March 81,780,503 1,007,320 9,102,677 89,052
April 82,658,881 1,018,326 9,192,666 90,145
May 86,065,680 1,032,094 9,574,768 91,591
June 86,967,132 1,015,938 10,024,838 92,113
July 90,733,888 1,027,886 10,367,437 92,784
August 94,199,489 1,043,864 11,052,866 94,959
September 96,067,772 1,506,416 11,233,276 95,796
October 97,450,859 1,070,266 11,363,979 96,892
November 98,568,849 1,079,197 11,492,488 97,437
December 100,751,994 1,092,674 11,829,499 98,637
January 104,196,861 1,132,935 11,964,001 99,944
UPDATED WEEKLY - Last updated on 26 February 2023, 1:19 pm PST, John Hopkins Corona Virus Dashboard and Worldometer
John Hopkins Worldometer
Recovered - Recovered - 652,472,043
POPULATION - is 336,213,314 of 26 February 2023, 1:19 pm PST, based on Census U.S. and World Population Clock.
* updated information
** no updated information at this reporting
Cases in the U.S.
Recovered - Recovered - 102,605,010
Cases in California
Recovered - Recovered - 11,826,322
* no updated information at this reporting
02/26/2023 (WHO) Cases Deaths Recovered Fully Vaccinated (JHU - %)***
* Rated last in vaccine distribution
*** no updated information at this reporting
United States progress Updated 26 February 2023, 1:19 pm PST,
** No updated information at this reporting
'Tripledemic' came home for the holidays, continues to circulate, strain Oregon hospitals.
Sat, January 7, 2023 at 6:01 AM PST. Masking and social distancing vigilance has decreased meanwhile, viruses have made vengeful returns. Over the holiday season, households and health care providers dealt with the impacts of ongoing COVID-19 cases, influenza and respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV.
Flu, mostly infuenza A is running rampant this year. This year has been notably severe for RSV and influenza compared to past seasons. During the last week of the year, the state reported 2,585 positive influenza tests. The Willamette Valley accounted for 199 of those. The severity of the flu isn’t as bad as in previous years, but more people are catching it.
Jan. 4, the Oregon Health Authority announced 2,876 new cases over the previous week and 62 newly identified deaths with the virus, pushing the state to 9,024 total.
“The severity of COVID is less than what it was in the beginning. We're not seeing the ICU patients, the deaths. It is closer to the flu,” Dr. James McGovern, chief medical officer of Peace Health Oregon, said. Throughout the pandemic, those with underlying conditions fared worse. “We're definitely seeing people who have underlying COPD, emphysema, asthma, those underlying lung conditions, he added.”
REVIEW................WHAT IS RSV?
RSV FAST FACTS:
RSV is a highly contagious virus that can lead to respiratory illness in babies, including lung infections such as bronchiolitis and pneumonia.* RSV infections can go from mild symptoms to hospitalization in less than a week.
WHEN TO CONTACT A DOCTOR? If you notice any of the following in your baby, contact your pediatrician right away!
RSV hits kids, infants. "This is the most severe pediatric season we have on record, with the caveat that we've only been collecting hospitalization data on children for the last five years," Sutton said.
In Oregon, RSV is not a mandatory reporting disease, with data limited to test results reported by participating laboratories. Participating laboratories reported 516 positive RSV tests during the last week of the year. Providers are seeing a decrease in RSV, experts said. While it may be trending downward, the virus is continuing to circulate. Most people who are sick are not going to the hospital or getting tested.
Strain on health care continues. Flu, COVID-19 and RSV are hitting with such force the situation has been dubbed a “tripledemic,” but they’re not the only viruses circulating.
Health officials said hospitals and health care facilities continue to be strained by a season of sickness. Ongoing staffing issues and health care workers are not immune from the viruses circulating in the community, which compounds the issues. This means wait times for elective surgeries are longer than usual.
What can you do? Mask in public, get up-to-date vaccines, wash hands and stay home when sick. Salem Health, also advised to keep a healthy lifestyle to prevent illness. Tips include:
Many young adults experiencing high levels of psychological distress during pandemic. January 24, 2023. The COVID-19 pandemic is continuing to take a toll on mental health nationwide. A recent Pew Research Center survey shows 41% of adults have experienced psychological distress at least once since March 2020.
This national survey shows many people are experiencing anxiety and loneliness. The Pew Research Center interviewed the same people several times over the last two and half years and found a majority of adults under 30 experienced high levels of psychological distress at least once since the start of the pandemic.
The Pew Research Center survey found one of the most common forms of distress is trouble sleeping. The survey also highlights some disparities. This includes higher levels of distress for low-income families and among minorities who have faced health and financial challenges.
“I think it’s also a time of transition: getting into college, graduating college, having a baby, getting one’s first house, all of those transitions that go in that 18 to 29 age group. COVID has really complicated that,” said Dr. Nadine Kaslow, Emory University School of Medicine.
“How is this negatively affecting people’s functioning? Or how are people functioning despite these increased experiences of psychological distress? What are people doing to take care of themselves, to help themselves,” said Kaslow. Experts say more people are seeking counseling since the pandemic hit, but they also want services to be more accessible especially for low-income families.
VARIANT UPDATE THE TRANSFORMERS AREN'T DONE JUST YET!
THE STATE OF COVID-19 AS OF JANUARY 2023
The latest variant, called XBB.1.5, grew exponentially over the month of December, from 1% of cases nationwide to 27 % as of Jan. 7, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The variant is likely behind the vast majority of cases in New York and New England. Its growth is probably due to XBB.1.5's characteristics. It appears to bind more tightly to receptors in the human body than its predecessors.
What to know about XBB.1.5 symptoms and how long they last. COVID-19 symptoms typically last around five to seven days and can include fever, sore throat, muscle aches, exhaustion, nausea, cough and sinus congestion, among other problems.
Early in the pandemic, COVID-19 often cost people their sense of taste and smell, temporarily, but that symptom seems less common, possibly because of vaccination or previous infection rather than a change in the virus according to Dr. Peter Hotez, infectious disease specialist and co-director of the Center for Vaccine Development at Texas Children’s Hospital.
How long does COVID last? How long are you contagious? It takes anywhere from two to 14 days for exposure to lead to symptoms and a positive test. People with COVID-19 are contagious as long as they remain positive on a rapid test, typically 10 days, but often longer.
The CDC recommends people isolate for a minimum five days and wear an N95 or similarly protective mask for at least 10 days when around others. Day One is considered the first full day after symptoms start.
A PCR test, considered the gold standard for diagnosing COVID-19, can remain positive for months because it detects viral fragments as well as the whole, infectious virus. To confirm the end of the contagious period, experts instead recommend a negative rapid test after 10 days or two within 48 hours if sooner.
Can you get COVID more than once? Yes! A previous infection provides some protection that fades over time and as the virus evolves into different variants. Individuals who have had a mild case with the first infection, often get hit harder the second or third time, while others might suffer less.
Could we be nearing the end of COVID? COVID-19 has been perhaps the most successful virus in all of human history infecting billions of people across the planet and it might continue to evolve. All the variants have been descendants of omicron. Previously, the original virus - alpha, beta and delta had been "radically" different from each other.
What’s CH.1.1? Meet ‘Orthrus,’ a new wildcard Omicron strain with a concerning Delta mutation. Fri, January 27, 2023 at 1:42 PM PST. Omicron spawn XBB.1.5, known as “Kraken,” dominates the U.S., according to federal health data.
There's now a new player being tracked by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
CH.1.1 or “Orthrus,” another Omicron spawn. It is named by Australian variant tracker Mike Honey, after a mythical two-headed cattle dog killed by Hercules.
CH.1.1 isn’t a “Deltacron,” a recombinant or combination of Delta and Omicron, an example of convergent evolution, a process where COVID variants evolve independently but pick up the same mutations.
Where and when was it discovered? CH.1.1 emerged in Southeast Asia last fall and now responsible for more than a quarter of infections in parts of the United Kingdom and New Zealand, according to researchers at Ohio State University. It now comprises 10% of COVID samples sequenced each day around the globe.
What countries has it been located in? New Zealand is seeing the bulk of CH.1.1 cases. Other hotspots include Hong Kong and Papua New Guinea, comprising a quarter of cases in each country and a fifth of cases in Cambodia and Ireland.
Why is it so concerning? XBB.1.5 continues to be the most transmissible, but CH.1.1 is worth watching because it’s highly transmissible, with levels doubling every two weeks or so. CH.1.1 also binds well to ACE2 receptors, the site where COVID infects human cells, according to Ohio State researchers. That means it has the potential to override, at least partially, antibody immunity from prior infection and vaccination and cause more severe disease.
CH.1.1 and new variant, CA.3.1, are more immune evasive than XBB and BQ sub-variants, researchers wrote.
How did it evolve? CH.1.1 is a descendent of BA.2.75, dubbed “Centaurus” this summer but fizzled out. Most dominant COVID strains right now are descendants of either BA.5, prominent throughout the world this summer or BA.2.75.
For example: If exposed to a BA.5 variant, you may be less vulnerable to new BA.5 variants for a time, but more vulnerable to BA.2.75 variants, and vice versa. XBB.1.5 is also a descendent of BA.2.75
Will the new Omicron COVID booster protect me? Ohio State researchers recommended the new Omicron booster but noted it will offer less protection against CH.1.1 and CA.3.1 than it will against other variants like XBB and BQ.1.1.
WHO head ‘very concerned’ about rising COVID deaths ahead of meeting to end—or extend—global public health emergency. January 24, 2023. The head of the World Health Organization, WHO, is “very concerned” about the rising number of global COVID deaths, days before its committee meets on whether to end or extend the global public health emergency.
Global COVID deaths have been increasing since December, Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, adding that in the past eight weeks, 170,000 people have died due to the virus. “That’s just reported deaths, the actual number of deaths is much higher.”
The global public health organization’s emergency committee will meet Friday to vote whether to end the organization's COVID emergency status after three years. “While clearly we’re in better shape than we were three years ago when the pandemic hit, the global collective response is once again under strain,” said Ghebreyesus.
Factors causing strain include:
Covid infections in your area amid warnings over new Omicron sub-variant. Sun, January 8, 2023 at 4:57 AM PST. The World Health Organization, the WHO, and the UK Covid experts have given warnings about the highly transmissible Omicron sub-variant, XBB 1.5.
In the week up to 31 December, there was a 15.4 % drop in cases in England, with 36,605 testing positive for the virus. Maps based on official UKHSA data of infections show the highest rates are mostly in the south of the country. Plymouth had the highest rate in the country, with 137.7 while North Somerset and East Sussex both recorded rates of 112.7. Further north, Norfolk also posted one of the higher rates, at 105.4.
Between 27 December and 2 January, 6,967 people went into hospital with the virus, a fall of 6.1 % in a week. Those over 85 are still the most likely to need hospital care. The number of deaths within 28 days of a positive coronavirus test rose slightly, to 873, an increase of 0.6 %.
Latest estimates show that 81.9 % of people aged 80 and over have received the jab.
Levels are much lower among younger groups. Almost half of 55 to 59-year-olds have not had a fresh dose of a coronavirus vaccine, along with 6 in 10 people, aged 50 to 54. Separate figures suggest nearly a third of people with long Covid in the UK are likely to have been suffering the symptoms for two years or more. 645,000 of those with long Covid are estimated to have first tested positive for the virus at least 24 months ago.
Florida COVID-19 hospitalizations spike; new sub-variant emerges. Sat, January 7, 2023 at 4:00 AM PST. COVID-19 hospitalizations are spiking in Florida. The number of new hospital admissions is far below what the state saw at this time last year when the omicron variant hit — and in early 2021 before COVID-19 vaccines became widely available.
During the week that ended Jan. 4, Florida reported 2,893 new COVID-19 hospitalizations, an increase of 17%. By contrast, during the first week of January 2022, Florida logged 11,130 new virus hospitalizations — a 105% jump from the prior
The virus has thrown curveballs again and again during the roughly three-year pandemic, mutating and driving surges of disease. The latest twist is XBB.1.5. The sub-variant accounts for almost 30% of recent infections in the country, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Only a quarter of Florida seniors have received an updated booster shot from Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna — the fourth-lowest rate of any state in the U.S. behind only Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana. An average of 292 Floridians age 70 and older were hospitalized with the virus every day during the week that ended Jan. 4, an increase of 42% compared to the prior week’s average, federal health officials reported.
Statewide, more than nine in 10 virus deaths last month were among seniors, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Florida Department of Health still hasn’t published guidance on whether seniors should get the updated booster. The vaccine is widely available, and “if individuals want it, they can get it.”
New COVID-19 omicron variant in Central Texas; Austin Public Health recommends masking again. Sat, January 7, 2023 at 4:26 PM PST. New Year, new COVID-19 variant, new rise in cases. Austin Public Health on Friday announced that a new omicron sub-variant, XBB.1, has been reported in Travis County. The omicron variant of the virus responsible for COVID-19 has five XBB types of sub-variant.
XBB.1.5, nicknamed "the Kraken" because of its transmissibility, has been seen in other cities in Texas. XBB.1.5 has not yet been detected in Austin's water samples yet. XBB.1.5 currently makes up 27.5% of cases in the Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana region.
"This new sub-variant is making its way into our community right as many people were indoors gathering during the cold and over the holidays," said Dr. Desmar Walkes, the Austin-Travis County health authority. "When mixed with a flu infection, the combination can cause serious illness for those at-risk such as children and seniors."
Because the level of spread has worsened, Austin Public Health is recommending that all people wear masks when social distancing is not possible, and people who are at risk for severe complications should wear masks in all public spaces. Caldwell and Hays counties should follow the recommendations for an area with a high level of spread, which is masking in public for everyone. Austin Public Health already has been requiring masks again in all health facilities since mid-December.
The 'crazy infectious' XBB.1.5 COVID variant is in Arizona. Here's what we know. January 12, 2023. A highly contagious new sub-variant of the COVID-19 virus fueling rising case numbers in the northeastern United States has been detected in Arizona, but not yet dominant. Arizona's warmer weather may prove to be advantageous against high levels of XBB.1.5 transmission.
David Engelthaler, leads the infectious-disease division of the Arizona-based Translational Genomics Research Institute, indicated “Arizona historically has been hit with surges of COVID-19 later than most other states and the level of the XBB.1.5 sub-variant we've seen since early December, it’s not one of our dominant strains. Here, it's one of dozens of sub-variants we seem to have in Arizona right now. We don't have great testing data anymore, especially with a lot of home testing and most of that doesn't get reported," Engelthaler said
XBB.1.5 appears to evade antibodies from vaccination and from prior infection. It has a mutation called F486 that easily invades and binds to human cells, allowing the virus to replicate and transmit more efficiently than prior descendants of the omicron variant.
"We now have all this population level of immunity from prior exposure," Engelthaler said. "It doesn't prevent us from getting infection because XBB.1.5 doesn't really care too much about our antibody loads!"
The good news, an unusually early and severe flu and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) season in Arizona appears to be waning, which could remove some stress from the health care system in the event of a rise in severe COVID-19 illness, though hospitals continue to struggle with staffing shortages. The not-so-good news is that XBB.1.5 is really contagious, or as University of Southern California virologist Paula Cannon recently told USA Today, it's "crazy infectious."
The updated COVID-19 booster shot should help but most Arizonans haven't received it. "The most important thing the public needs to know is that the vaccines are the best defense to protecting themselves and others," the UA's Goodrum wrote. "Two doses of any of the mRNA vaccines plus one booster will provide very strong protection against severe disease." If people are high risk or care for people that are, they should use a high quality mask, KN95 or better in public places with lots of people.
"Masking, distancing and hand washing are really effective ways to limit transmission in addition to vaccination. Combining a few of these measures with vaccination is really very protective." Even though public health officials recommend the updated bivalent COVID-19 booster vaccine, only 14% of the Arizona population over the age of five had received it as of Jan. 4, CDC data shows.
People who haven't had COVID will likely catch XBB.1.5 – and many will get reinfected, experts say. Sat, January 7, 2023 at 9:46 AM PST. The newest COVID-19 variant is so contagious people who've avoided it so far are getting infected and the roughly 80% of Americans who've already been infected are likely to catch it again, experts say.
Essentially, everyone in the country is at risk for infection now, even if they're super careful, up to date on vaccines, or have caught it before, said Paula Cannon, a virologist at the University of Southern California.
How to avoid infection
Should You Take Paxlovid if You Are Mildly Ill? Sat, January 7, 2023, 7:53 AM PST. It is becoming harder to avoid infection or reinfection, from the coronavirus with each variant that emerges. Omicron offshoots like the XBB.1.5 sub-variant are better at dodging antibodies. COVID cases seem to be growing milder, either because new variants are less likely to go deep into the lungs or because most people have been vaccinated, exposed or both.
Which raises the question: Do mild cases of COVID warrant treatment with an antiviral medication like Paxlovid? Paxlovid is known to reduce the severity of illness and lower the risk of developing long-term symptoms such as chronic fatigue, muscle pain, kidney disease, heart disease, blood clotting problems and neurocognitive impairments. Research has shown the vaccine benefits both vaccinated and unvaccinated people, as well as those experiencing the first infection or who have had a reinfection.
Studies conducted showed Paxlovid reduced severe outcomes by 89% in unvaccinated people and slightly less impressive in vaccinated people. Paxlovid still decreased the odds of hospitalization and death by about 57%. Paxlovid stops the coronavirus from replicating in cells.
Scientists hypothesize that by reducing the viral load in the body quickly, it hinders problems linked to severe outcomes and long-lasting symptoms, like damage to blood vessels, widespread inflammation and over-activation of the immune system.
The antiviral treatment is only given if a prescription can be filled within the first five days of symptom onset. Studies show that adults older than 65 benefit the most from taking Paxlovid. Their age puts them at higher risk for poor outcomes regardless of whether they have other medical conditions.
Because the drug is provided under an emergency use authorization by the FDA, doctors don’t typically prescribe it outside the stated eligibility criteria. Another source of confusion is interactions Paxlovid can have with many drugs, including statins, beta blockers, blood thinners, antipsychotic medicines, seizure medicines, certain migraine medicines and hormonal birth control.
The antiviral Paxlovid appears to work against XBB.1.5. There's nothing about XBB.1.5 that would make it resistant to the antiviral COVID-19 treatment Paxlovid. Dr. Ashish Jha, White House COVID-19 response coordinator, tweeted Jan. 4, both Paxlovid and the oral pills Molnupiravir "should work fine" against XBB.1.5 "based on what we know." Jha added that anyone who is infected and at an elevated risk of serious illness from COVID-19 should take Paxlovid, even if their symptoms are mild. "Anyone over 50 with a chronic disease should consider getting Pax."
French health authority advises against use of Valneva's COVID-19 vaccine. December 8, 2022. PARIS (Reuters) - France's Haute Autorite de Sante public health body advised the government not to use Valneva's VLA2001 COVID-19 vaccine as part of its wider vaccination strategy, although two rival products should be included as booster shots.
The HAS body recommended Sanofi and GSK's VidPrevtyn Beta and Novavax's Nuvaxovid shots to boost the vaccination of people who cannot be given bivalent mRNA vaccines which shall remain the first choice.
How to Protect Yourself? Getting vaccinated is your best bet!
IT’S NOT OVER!
Stay safe. Mask. Social distance. Frequent hand washing. Avoid crowds
ALWAYS CONSULT YOUR PERSONAL HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONAL
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