Amid surge, US COVID-19 vaccinations continue to rise
Boosters, breakthrough cases, and the impending school year continue to be top of mind as the US COVID-19 surge reaches some sobering milestones as deaths so far in August top the numbers seen in all of last month and workers scramble to get vaccine into arms.
In the week ending Aug 18, the country reported 5,472 COVID-19 deaths, nearly double the total from 2 weeks earlier, according to USA Today. The 10,991 Americans who died of COVID-19 in the first 18 days of August number more than all the COVID-19 fatalities in June or July.
Hospitals are reaching capacity, and soon some may be forced to make tough decisions: Yesterday, a memo surfaced saying that north Texas doctors may consider prioritizing vaccinated COVID-19 patients over unvaccinated ones for intensive care unit beds, according to Forbes. The Dallas Morning News broke the story, but late yesterday, it added an update saying Mark Casanova, MD, spokesperson for the task force behind the memo, has now said vaccinations should not be a factor in critical care triage decisions.
Overall, the United States reported 138,472 new COVID-19 cases and 908 deaths yesterday, according to the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 tracker.
Rising vaccinations, postponed booster discussion
More than 1 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine were administered yesterday—the first time since early July that the country hit that mark, according to CNN. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) COVID Data Tracker shows 51.1% of Americans are fully vaccinated and 60.2% have received at least one COVID-19 shot.