COVID metrics showed more declines last week, though deaths from the virus—one of its severity indicators—rose 4.2% compared to the previous week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said in its latest data update. Deaths were up a bit in a number of states but were up more sharply in Oregon.
However, hospitalizations for COVID, which the CDC also uses to track severity, declined 5% over the past week. Levels are low for most of the country, except for parts of the upper midwest and northwest, where several counties are in the moderate range.
Early indicators also showed more declines. Emergency department visits for COVID were down 11.9% compared to a week ago. Nationally, the test positivity rate declined 0.7% and is at 9.5%. Levels are higher in the western part of the country and in part of the northeast.