COVID-19: Deaths, Hospitalization and Vaccination

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Day 279: Stay Safe Minnesota

As the year 2020 comes to an end, how the coronavirus pandemic gripped the globe with unprecedented deaths, hospitalization and finally some hope with vaccination will be remembered for years to come.

In the CNN Health, Christina Maxouris writes that there were more than 3,740 Covid-19 deaths on Wednesday alone, a record number for the second day in a row. “And the outlook is grim for January. More than 80,000 Americans could die of Covid-19 over the next three weeks, a new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ensemble forecast projects — offering a stark reminder the nation is still facing challenging times.”

According to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, on Tuesday Dec 29, US broke its record for the most number of coronavirus-related deaths in a single day with 3,725, previous single-day death toll of 3,656 recorded on Dec. 16, writes The Hill. On the same day, Texas shatter its daily record too with 26,990 new infections, 41% higher than the previous record.

Record COVID Hospitalization

According to CNN Dec 30 Covid tracking project, over 125,220 peoples are hospitalized due to covid-19 as of Wednesday. It was the 29th consecutive day that the US has remained above 100,000 current hospitalizations, CNN reports:

  • Dec. 30: 125,220
  • Dec. 29: 124,686
  • Dec. 28: 121,235
  • Dec. 24: 120,151
  • Dec. 23: 119,463

MN Current COVID-19 Statistics

As of Thursday Dec 31, the Minnesota’s latest COVID-19 statics is as follows:

  • 5,323 deaths
  • 415,302 positive cases, 397,080 off isolation (96 percent)
  • 5.5 million tests, 3 million people tested (about 52 percent of the population)
  • 6.6 percent seven-day positive test rate (officials find 5 percent concerning)

Active COVID-19 cases slowing down to now near 13,000, part of an overall slowdown in caseloads since their late November, early December peak, MPR News reports.

2020 COVID Pandemic Look Back

As the year 2020 comes to the end, CNN’s Sanjay Gupta breaks down key milestones in the coronavirus’ path to becoming a global pandemic and how the US responded.

COVID-19 Vaccination in US

According to the CNN Dec 30 Coronavirus updates, US lagging behind several other countries in its Covid-19 vaccination efforts. According to the CNN tracking:

  • 2,794,588 doses were administered from December 14 through December 30 at 9 a.m.
  • A total of 12,409,050 doses of the vaccine have been distributed to US states
  • 167,149 peoples in long-term care facilities received vaccination
  • That’s 151,939 shots per day, or a daily rate of 46 shots per 100,000 people in the country.

“That is significantly lower than the daily vaccination rates for Israel, the UK, and Bahrain. The daily rate per 100,000 in Israel is 608, for Bahrain it’s 263, and for the UK it’s 60, according to data supplied by those governments,” CNN reports.

Slow Vaccine Rollout

Vaccine rollout has been reportedly slower than experts had hoped for. “More than 2.7 million doses of the vaccine have been administered, according to the latest CDC numbers, and more than 12.4 million have been distributed in the US. The numbers are still a far cry from the 20 million vaccinations that officials had promised by the end of the year,” CNN reports.

We need to be doing a better job’ on vaccine rollout. I know we will be distributing about 30 million more in January and potentially up to 50 million more in February.

Brett Giroir, Assistant Secretary for Health Adm (source: CNN)

The White House scientific adviser of Operation Warp Speed, Moncef Slaoui told the reporters that the federal effort to accelerate vaccine development and distribution is slow.

We agree that that number is lower than what we hoped for. We know that it should be better, and we’re working hard to make it better.

Moncef Slaoui, scientific adviser of Operation Warp Speed (source: The New York Times)

COVID Vaccination in MN

In the Star Tribune, Glenn Howatt writes that 38,000 Minnesotans have been given COVID-19 vaccination during the past two weeks. With the expected addition vaccine doses, the state expects to vaccinate half of the 500,000 first priority group (health care workers and long-term care residents).

There isn’t a lot of vaccine that is just sitting around. There is a lot of vaccine moving around.

Kris Ehresmann, state infectious disease director (source: Star Tribune)

‘State health officials have estimated that it could take until the end of January to finish vaccinating the high priority recipients, depending on future shipments,’ writes the Tribune.

Novavax Vaccine Trial at the U

According to the Tribune, University of Minnesota to begin new COVID-19 vaccine trial next week.

“The University of Minnesota will announce that it will be part of a clinical trial for a vaccine developed by Maryland-based Novavax and funded by the federal government as part of Operation Warp Speed. The U will be one of 115 sites in the United States and Mexico that will enroll 30,000 people.”

According to Marc Jenkins, an immunologist and director of the U’s Center for Immunology, “the Novavax vaccine uses a stabilized form of the coronavirus spike protein to generate an immune response. It is not a vaccine that uses a weakened form of the virus, such as the flu vaccine”.

It is one protein from that virus. It is not live at all.

Marc Jenkins, Immunologist, University of Minnesota (source: Star Tribune)

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID vaccination tracker page (as of Dec 30, 9 a.m.) 12,409,050 doses have been distributed and 2,794,588 doses administered.

Coronavirus Pandemic Watch

According to the MDH latest tally (as of Dec 31, 11 a.m.) the confirmed COVID-19 cases in Minnesota are 415,302 (out of 5,574,962 tested) with 5,323 deaths. According to Johns Hopkins database (as of Dec 31, 2:23 p.m.) there are 19,906,569 confirmed covid19 infection with 344,525 deaths. Globally the covid19 virus has infected 83,207,199 with 1,813,229 deaths.