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If You Live in These States, You Are Most Vulnerable to COVID

These states have a high number of hospitalizations.
FACT CHECKED BY Emilia Paluszek

COVID cases are completely off the charts, but experts say that hospitalizations are the key metric to watch. Unfortunately, hospitals are filling up. No matter that Omicon is possibly "less severe" than Delta, so many people are catching it, and getting sick (predominantly unvaccinated people), our medical care system is overwhelmed. Which states are the most vulnerable right now? COVID Act Now has a "vulnerability level" for the states, measuring the number of cases, hospitalizations and vaccinations. Read on to see the top ten most vulnerable right now—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.



Phoenix, Arizona, USA cityscape in downtown at sunset.

"COVID-19 hospitalizations in Arizona increased for the fourth straight day as the state's seven-day rolling averages for virus cases and deaths both increased over the past two weeks. There were 2,555 COVID-19 patients occupying hospital inpatient beds statewide as of Tuesday, up from 2,283 on Saturday, according to the state's coronavirus dashboard. The dashboard on Wednesday reported 61 additional COVID-19 deaths and 7,749 additional confirmed cases, increasing the state's pandemic totals to 24,570 deaths and 1,419,562 cases," reports Fox 10.


New York

woman with mask walking in nearly empty new york street

"New York state reported 130 new COVID fatalities on Thursday, the highest single-day toll since the mass vaccination rollout, and more than 11,000 hospital admissions, the highest total since the peak of the crisis in the spring of 2020. Gov. Kathy Hochul reported 84,202 new COVID cases in the last day, which is 1,274 cases shy of the single-day record of 85,476 the governor announced on the first day of the new year," reports NBC New York. "More than one in five New York COVID tests are coming back positive these days, and the city has seen positivity rates nearing one in every three tests at times over the last month. As eye-popping as the daily case reports have become, experts say infections alone, which have proven to be milder when associated with omicron versus delta, are not their primary concern."

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Honky-tonks on Lower Broadway

"One in every three coronavirus tests reported to the Tennessee Department of Health in the past week has been positive, a worrisome sign the omicron variant catapulted the virus to unknown heights while casually shattering records set by prior surges," reports the Tennesean. "Tennessee's weekly test positivity rate climbed to 34% — at least 10 percentage points higher than the peaks of the prior surges — according to virus data released by the state government on Monday."



Mississippi welcome sign with the words "Birthplace of America's Music"

"The Mississippi State Department of Health reported 6,592 new cases of COVID-19 and 11 new deaths in the state Wednesday. That case total is for the period between 3pm Monday and 3pm Tuesday," reports WLOX. "It's the highest single-day number of cases the state has recorded since the pandemic began in March 2020. Previously, the highest number of cases in a 24-hour period was 5,048 on Aug. 20, 2021."

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Drone shot of a woman walking down a street toward Downtown Los Angeles.

"California is struggling to staff hospitals and classrooms as an astonishing spike in coronavirus infections sweeps through the state," reports KTLA. "The fast-spreading omicron variant of COVID-19 is sidelining exposed or infected health care workers even as hospital beds fill with patients and 'some facilities are going to be strapped,' Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said Wednesday.



Downtowntown Atlanta, Georgia Skyline.

"Georgia saw the biggest single-day jump in current hospitalizations on Wednesday since the start of the pandemic. The Georgia Department of Public Health reported 433 new patients were reported in the last 24 hours, beating the previous record set back on April 28, 2020. The spike comes a day after 102 personnel with the Georgia National Guard received their assignments to be posted with the state's 11 health care systems," reports Fox 5.

RELATED: The #1 Cause of "Severe" COVID, Say Experts


North Carolina

Raleigh skyline in the summer with crepe myrtle trees in bloom

"Doctors from Duke, UNC-REX and WakeMed hospitals all echoed the same three messages on Thursday: get vaccinated, get boosted and avoid emergency rooms if you aren't seriously ill," reports WRAL. "The joint news conference comes alongside another day of record new cases of the virus in North Carolina. On Thursday, a record 24,292 new cases were reported, with 30.1% of tests returning positive over the past 24 hours." "I think we are going to keep setting new records for COVID cases here in North Carolina for some time to come," said Dr. Mark McClellan, a former FDA commissioner who now heads the Margolis Center for Health Policy at Duke University. "Nationally, we are averaging over 500,000 recorded cases per week. I think those numbers are going to go up considerably to 800,000 or 900,000 perhaps over the next week or two."



Montgomery, Alabama

"Alabama doctors expressed their concerns about rising COVID-19 hospitalizations in the state during a live Q&A session on Tuesday," reports Fox 54. "We don't hospitalize people for colds. We rarely hospitalized people for influenza. There were 30 people in the hospital today for influenza. There were 1,247 in the hospital for COVID," said Alabama Hospital Association President and CEO Don Wilkerson.

RELATED: Omicron Symptoms Patients Complain About Most



aerial view of boca raton florida community, looking across golf community toward beach and atlantic ocean

"Florida added nearly 60,000 more COVID-19 cases Wednesday, as hospitalizations in the state continued to rise. The 59,487 new cases pushed the state's total to 4,419,665 since the pandemic began, according to figures released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention," reports NBC Miami. "Florida's 7-day moving average for daily cases has risen to over 50,000 in recent days, after it had dropped below 1,300 as recently as last month."



A pedestrian bridge crossing the Buffalo Bayou into downtown Houston Texas.

"The number of Texans hospitalized each day with COVID-19 continued to rise over the New Year's holiday, according to state health numbers released Monday, as the omicron variant continues to drive new cases and hospitals await desperately needed staffing help to respond to new admissions," reports the Texas Tribune. "As of Monday, more than 7,000 Texans were hospitalized with COVID-19, more than double the number two weeks ago but still far below the pandemic peak of 14,218 on Jan. 11, 2021." No matter where you live, get vaccinated and boosted, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.

Alek Korab
Alek Korab is a Co-Founder and Managing Editor of the ETNT Health channel on Eat This, Not That! Read more about Alek
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