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Hospitalizations for COVID-19 surpass peak levels of last summer, data shows

Updated August 2, 2021 - 8:38 pm

Nevada on Monday reported that 1,224 people were hospitalized with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases in the state, surpassing the peak of the virus’ second wave last summer.

State data shows that the second wave peaked on July 31, 2020, when 1,165 people were hospitalized. The data shows that 1,144 people were hospitalized with confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19 on Aug. 1, 2020. A year later, according to the data, that number is at 1,224.

It’s no surprise that those numbers are starting to overwhelm hospitals, especially in Clark County, where major COVID-19 metrics have surged in recent weeks. A mask mandate went into effect Friday after the CDC recommended that people in areas with a “high rate of transmission” mask up.

The state also reported 2,531 new coronavirus cases and six deaths over the preceding three days, again eclipsing the highest tally of new cases reported since the state stopped updating numbers on weekends.

Data posted by the state Department of Health and Human Services on the state’s coronavirus website for Friday through Sunday showed the state’s totals moved to 358,832 cases and 5,918 deaths.

The two-week moving average of new cases also continued to rise to 929 per day, up 59 from the 870 cases a day reported Friday.

The two-week moving average of new cases has been climbing since it reached a low of 132 on June 5, with much of that growth occurring in Clark County. The deaths reported were below the two-week moving average, which dropped from seven to six.

The state’s two-week positivity rate, meanwhile, which essentially tracks the percentage of people tested for COVID-19 who are found to be infected, increased by 0.6 of a percentage point to 14.9 percent, according to state data.

The rate has now risen over 11 percentage points in just over a month after reaching a recent low of 3.3 percent on June 9.

Nevada no longer reports numbers over the weekend, and public health officials have said that reporting on Mondays and sometimes Tuesdays can be inflated as a result of the delayed compilation of local reports.

State and county health agencies also often redistribute the daily data after it is reported to better reflect the date of death or a test or onset of symptoms, which is why the moving-average trend lines frequently differ from daily reports and are considered better indicators of the direction of the outbreak.

Even as the mask mandate went into effect, local and state officials have repeatedly stressed that vaccinations are the way forward. As they have created incentive based programs like the Vax Nevada Days Raffle, vaccination numbers have started to tick up. The state was administering below 5,000 doses a day in mid-June, but that number is now above 6,100, according to state data.

The state has also been performing more COVID-19 tests, with that number rising almost 2,000 per day since mid-June, when most of the state’s metrics were at relatively low levels.

The Southern Nevada Health District reported 2,156 new cases in Clark County for Friday through Sunday, bringing the local cumulative case total to 282,357. It also reported all six of the state’s deaths, bringing the number of deaths in the county to 4,711.

The county’s 14-day positivity rate also climbed to 16 percent.

County numbers are reflected in the statewide totals.

Contact Jonah Dylan at jdylan@reviewjournal.com. Follow @TheJonahDylan on Twitter.

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