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If You Live Here, Fear COVID, Says Virus Expert

Cases may rise here.
FACT CHECKED BY Emilia Paluszek

Coronavirus cases are going down—but too many people are unvaccinated still. Michael Osterholm, Director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, is concerned. "It is true that Alaska still remains, unfortunately, the most impacted state in the country right now. They're seeing about 890 cases per day. On average, it's down 6% from their height, but I'm telling you, they still are under major pressure….If you look at the other states with the highest number of cases, it's Montana, where you see right now, 85 cases per a hundred thousand; Idaho, 74 cases per a hundred thousand; Wyoming, 73 cases per a hundred thousand; in North Dakota, 66 cases per hundred thousand; Minnesota is a distant down there at 43 cases per a hundred thousand, but still quite elevated. If you look at those states, I just mentioned, they all have just hit peaks or are about leveled off," he says. So which states does he predict may have surges next? Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.

1

Colorado

Colorado State Flag with Pikes Peak and Garden of the Gods in the background on a spring day
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"Most of the country is seeing a drop in cases of COVID-19, but Colorado continues to be in a surge. An expected plateau two weeks ago has been exceeded. It's attracting attention around the country. The New York Times tabulation of COVID cases shows 37 states declining. Colorado is ranked 7th worst in the increase in cases over the past two weeks," reports the local CBS channel. "The predictability of this virus is that it's completely unpredictable," said Dr. Michelle Barron, senior medical director of infection prevention at UCHealth Hospital. "The states that had the worst vaccination rates also had the most acceleration in cases."

2

New Mexico

Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA downtown skyline at dusk.
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"The COVID booster shot rate is off to a slow start in New Mexico. According to early numbers from the state's Department Of Health, a lot of people eligible for the shot are taking their time to get it," reports KRQE. "We're not quite sure why only 22% of people decided to get their booster shot. We have made availability throughout the state to get the booster. A lot of the locations where we have opened vaccine shots, there haven't been as high uptake as we thought," said Dr. Laura Parajon, Deputy Secretary for NMDOH.

RELATED: When to Get Your Booster Shot, According to an Expert

3

Vermont

Montpelier, Vermont, USA town skyline in autumn.
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"Vermont reported 107 new Covid-19 cases and two new deaths Wednesday, along with a sharp uptick in Vermonters who are hospitalized with the virus, according to data from the state Department of Health.

Daily case counts have declined throughout the week, but the seven-day average remains above 200 cases. The state reported a record-high single-day total of 345 cases on Saturday," reports the VT Digger. "Hospitalization numbers have remained in the 30s and 40s since early September, but on Wednesday that count rose to a recent high of 55, including 17 people in intensive care. Two more people were hospitalized with suspected cases."

RELATED: Dr. Fauci Just Issued This Kids' Vaccine Update

4

The Northeast

Shot of illness young woman coughing in the street.
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"As weather grows colder and children spend more time in school, a surge of Covid-19 cases like the one in the South could be in store for the Northeast, but it is not too late to get ahead of it, Dr. Anthony Fauci said," according to CNN. "It is within our power, and within our grasp, to prevent that from occurring," Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told CNN. "The way to do it, he said, is by utilizing mitigation measures such as wearing masks indoors and in schools, as well as increasing vaccination rates. The idea of vaccine mandates for schools and businesses has sparked debate through much of the country, but with the spread of the Delta variant, more leaders are adopting such methods."

RELATED: Ways You're Ruining Your Body, Says CDC

5

How to Stay Safe Out There

Nurse taking blood sample from young female patient in the background. Selective focus on sample tube.
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Follow the public health fundamentals and help end this pandemic, no matter where you live—get vaccinated ASAP; if you live in an area with low vaccination rates, wear an N95 face mask, don't travel, social distance, avoid large crowds, don't go indoors with people you're not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, 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