New cases of COVID-19 in the United States fell 0.4% last week after rising for four weeks in a row, according to a Reuters analysis of state and county data.
Health experts say new cases have plateaued at a high level as more infectious variants of the virus offset progress made in vaccinations. The country logged nearly 70,000 new cases per day in the week ended April 18, compared with 55,000 new cases a day in March and about 30,000 new cases this time last year.
Michigan continued to lead the states, with nearly twice as many new cases per 100,000 people last week as Rhode Island and New Jersey, the states with the next highest rates of infection based on population.
The average number of COVID-19 patients in hospitals rose 5% to more than 41,000 across the country, increasing for a third week in a row, according to the Reuters analysis.
Deaths from COVID-19, which tend to lag infections by several weeks, fell 2.8% last week, excluding a backlog of deaths reported by Oklahoma, according to the Reuters analysis. Including the backlog, reported deaths fell by 27%.
Cumulatively, nearly 568,000 people have died from the coronavirus pandemic, or one in every 576 U.S. residents.
Vaccinations plateaued at 3.1 million shots per day last week, after setting records the previous seven weeks. U.S. health regulators called for a pause in administering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine last week due to reports of brain blood clots in six women who received the shot out of some 7 million vaccinated.
As of Sunday, 40% of the U.S. population has received at least one dose of a vaccine, and 25% was fully vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
As of July 27, reports of COVID-19 cases and deaths are sourced to Reuters reporting in order to streamline data reconciliation efforts when discrepancies arise. Testing data continues to come from The COVID Tracking Project.
About the data: On March 1, 2021, this page stopped using new hospitalization and testing data from The COVID Tracking Project in anticipation of that project’s end. The hospitalization data shown here was collected by Reuters after August 1, 2020. The previous data comes from The COVID Tracking Project’s archives.
The vaccination data comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Reuters collates and checks this data by hand and the figures largely come from state, county and territory government/public health department websites. Reuters also occasionally sources information from press conferences, press releases and verified tweets and social media posts by state officials. While some states and counties report fresh numbers daily, others only update on weekdays or less frequently.
Reuters’ total cases and deaths include both confirmed and probable cases and deaths where data is available. If probable cases and deaths are not reported, only confirmed cases and deaths are shown.
On April 7, 2021, Oklahoma reported 1,716 new deaths that occurred between August and February that had gone unreported due to an error by a lab.
A change in reporting methodology in Iowa on Feb. 19 resulted in a one-time increase of over 27,000 new cases.
A spike observed in deaths in Ohio and nationally in early February 2021 is due to Ohio including 4,275 probable deaths from earlier in the pandemic.
A spike observed in deaths in Indiana and nationally in early February 2021 is due to Indiana including over 1,500 probable deaths from earlier in the pandemic.
Missouri cases and deaths for the week ended Jan. 31 include a one-time increase due to Reuters including data reported by St. Louis County.
Texas began reporting probable cases on Dec. 11. The change resulted in a one-day increase of roughly 65,000 cases.
On Sept. 2, Massachusetts adopted a more restrictive definition for probable cases, which resulted in a significant fall in the number of cases. Reuters has reconciled all historical data to reflect this change in methodology
Virginia reported a large backlog of positive infections on Aug. 7, resulting in an abnormal spike in cases.
On July 30, Minnesota began reporting the total number of people tested instead of total specimens tested. This changed the state total by more than 173,000 tests for July 31.
A spike observed in deaths in New Jersey and nationally in late June is due to New Jersey including over 1,800 probable deaths from earlier in the pandemic.
Wyoming’s spike in late April is due to the inclusion of probable cases.
New cases in Alabama more than doubled to 7,787 in late March but this included a backlog.
Reporting by Roshan Abraham, Shaina Ahluwalia, Kavya B, Christine Chan, Chaithra J, Anurag Maan, Sangameswaran S and Lisa Shumaker,
Sources: Vaccination data is from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Deaths, cases and hospitalization data is from state and local governments, health authorities and Reuters reporting; Hospitalization data prior to August 1, 2020 is from The COVID Tracking Project
Editing by Tiffany Wu