Is Georgia among those managing a surge in coronavirus hospitalizations? Or is it collapsing beneath the weight? A new ranking weighs in.
GEORGIA — Georgia is among dozens of U.S. states seeing a surge in COVID-19 hospitalizations as the highly contagious delta variant sweeps through cities across the nation.
In fact, Georgia is among states that have reported the highest jump in hospitalizations over the past 14 days, according to a new ranking by Becker's Hospital Review based on data obtained through The New York Times.
In the last 14 days, our state has seen a 123 percent increase in hospitalizations, according to the report. Currently, 21 out of every 100,000 Georgia residents are hospitalized with coronavirus-related complications.
As of Aug. 3, Georgia was ranked No. 5 in the nation for the largest increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations.
Nationwide, daily hospitalization rates have increased 83 percent over the last two weeks, with 49 states and the District of Columbia seeing rates surge, according to New York Times data.
The alarming hospitalization numbers come as the United States records a new spike in coronavirus cases.
Currently, the United States is reporting 75,000 new cases per day, up from a low of 11,000 cases per day just six weeks ago. Deaths have also risen by 31 percent, according to a Washington Post report.
The surge in cases has been driven largely by the highly contagious delta variant. While it's unclear whether the delta variant makes people sicker, experts believe it spreads more easily because of mutations, making it better at latching onto cells in our bodies, according to an Associated Press report.
The delta variant, first detected in India, has quickly become the dominant strain in multiple countries, including the United States.
Some experts say we should expect the number of new daily cases to grow.
A Columbia University model predicts the United States could see 140,000 cases per day by the end of August. Modelers at the University of Washington's Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation show cases rising through mid-August and leveling off at 300,000 new cases per day, The Post reported.
A bit of good news: As the delta variant spreads, the United States on Monday reached its goal of having 70 percent of eligible adults at least partly vaccinated against the coronavirus.
Currently, 165.1 million eligible Americans are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
Since the onset of the pandemic, more than 35.1 million Americans have been infected by the coronavirus. More than 614,000 have been killed, according to Johns Hopkins University."