The number of post-holiday COVID-19 cases is dramatically down this year than it was last January, according to the Delaware Division of Public Health.
This time last year, the state saw 3,666 new cases reported on Jan. 6 with 759 hospitalizations on Jan. 12.
This year, there were 266 new cases reported on Jan. 6, with 202 hospitalizations (24 critical) on Jan. 10.
The reduced number of new cases can partially be attributed to the number of people who test at home and don’t seek tests in clinics or hospitals, where they would be reported to the state.
The lower number of hospitalizations likely is because the current strains of COVID-19 are not causing as much serious illness, partly because vaccines have helped prevent that.
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Even with the encouraging signs, Public Health urges people to stay healthy and prevent the spread of the virus by staying home when sick, testing when symptoms appear or when exposed to someone with COVID-19, staying up to date with vaccinations and boosters, and considering wearing a mask in crowded spaces.
Those who may want to seek treatment for COVID-19 include people who are 50 years or older (especially over 65, as risk increases with age); unvaccinated; having chronic lung disease, heart disease, diabetes, a weakened immune system or other underlying conditions.
- Total positive cases since March 11, 2020: 324,137*
- 7-day daily average of new positive cases: 221.3, an increase of 62.2 average new positive cases reported since Dec. 15, 2022
- 7-day daily average for the percentage of total positive tests: 15.5 percentage points, an increase of 6.1 percentage points reported since Dec. 15, 2022
- Hospitalizations: 202 current hospitalizations, 24 critical hospitalizations
- Total COVID-19 deaths: 3,220.
- 2,099,714 vaccine doses administered
- 77.2% of Delawareans 5+ fully vaccinated
- 81.3% of Delawareans 12+ fully vaccinated
- 82.9% of Delawareans 18+ fully vaccinated
- 73% of Delawareans who are fully vaccinated (CDC data): 73.1%
Betsy Price is a Wilmington freelance writer who has 40 years of experience, including 15 at The News Journal in Delaware.
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