People’s CDC COVID-19 Weather Report


The Weather: Transmission levels continue to remain high, with close to 85% of the population living in areas with substantial or higher COVID transmission, an almost 2% increase from last week.

Map and table show COVID transmission levels by US county as of 11/24/22. Low to Moderate transmission levels are pale yellow, Substantial is orange, High is red, Very High is brown, and Extremely High is black. Mountain, Southwest, and Plains states are mostly red with some pale, orange, and black. The South is pale with orange and red spots. West Coast, East Coast, Midwest, and South FL are red and orange. Text reads: 84.92 percent of the US population lives in an area with substantial or higher transmission. A Transmission Level table shows 1.05 percent of counties (0.26 percent by population) as Extremely High, 2.80 percent of the counties (2.62 percent by population) as Very High, 40.01 percent of counties (44.22 percent by population) as High, 29.92 percent of counties (37.82 percent by population) as Substantial, and 26.23 percent of counties (15.08 percent by population) as Low to Moderate. The People's CDC created the graphic from CDC data.
The People’s CDC created the graphic from CDC data.

With PCR testing infrastructure dismantled in Spring 2022, this map represents an undercount. We applaud the National Institute of Health for finally releasing an anonymous self-reporting portal for rapid antigen tests. Until now, these tests were largely unreported in the US.

Transmission reporting and map presentation matters. As we reported on 11/21, the CDC’s recent MMMR shows half of adults surveyed incorrectly perceived COVID transmission to be low to moderate, despite sustained high transmission.

To put this optimistically, when people perceive transmission to be high, they use mitigations like masks. Forward our newsletter to five friends, and encourage them to subscribe!

On Variants: There are a lot of variants circulating in the US, most of which are resistant to monoclonal antibodies.

Monoclonal antibodies were previously used as preventative medicine and as treatment for people who are immunocompromised or unable to take Paxlovid, and based on this study, these may be no longer be viable options.

 “This is fine dog” removed from his house, but remains at his table enjoying coffee. Flames surround the table. He is superimposed over an evolutionary flow chart starting with SARS-CoV-2 variant BA.2 before fracturing off in to an overwhelming number of branches, sub branches, and iterative branches demonstrating a complexity I don’t know how to convey in alt text. There are too many evolutionary branches.
Graphic Source: Pandemic Memes Collection

Hospitalizations: The CDC’s COVID-based hospitalizations chart that we show every week appears to illustrate a plateau in current hospitalizations, despite reports of overwhelmed hospital systems.

A line chart represents new admissions of patients with confirmed COVID in the United States over time. “New Admissions per 100,000 Population” is the y-axis. The dates from January 2021 to July 2022 are on the x-axis, though actual dates range from August 2020 to November 2022. There are eight distinct lines which represent different age groups. The age groups are not specified in this image. They are: dark purple line for people 70 and older; dashed pink for people 60-69; dotted pink for people 50-59; solid green for people 40-49; dashed teal for people 30-39; dotted teal for people 18-29; solid yellow for under 17. The lines indicate peak hospitalizations in January 2021, August 2021, and January 2022, with smaller peaks in April 2021 and July 2022. In each case, the dark purple line is markedly higher than the others. Zooming in over the past few months, the dark purple line hovers around 5 admissions/100,000 population and the rest of the lines are clustered under 2/100,000.
Graphic source: CDC COVID Data Tracker: New Hospital Admissions

Remember that this chart does not show hospitalizations from flu, RSV, or rhinovirus, which are being seen in both pediatric and adult hospitals. It also doesn’t reflect the effects of a mass exodus from the healthcare system.

The healthcare system has lost all sorts of workers: CNAs, respiratory therapists, doctors, nurses, and social workers, meaning fewer staff members are doing more care work.

National Nurses United (NNU) cautions that overwhelming RSV and flu hospitalizations are the result of the lack of public health protections, not “immunity debt.”

Compelling evidence suggests that COVID-19 can lead to immunological dysfunction, which can persist for over eight months after a mild to medium COVID infection.

Deaths: From 11/17 to 11/24, 2,633 people died of COVID nationally. That brings the 2022 death total to over 247,500. We cannot let ourselves become numb to these staggering numbers.

Take Action: Given the urgency of the moment, it is essential that we protect each other. If you are choosing to gather with friends and family amidst the ongoing pandemic, please use #LayersOfLove. Share our Safer In-Person Gathering guide to help prevent spread.

Remember that COVID is airborne and that masks protect against COVID as well as the other viruses surging right now (flu, RSV, and rhinovirus). We urge you to wear a well-fitting N95, KN95, or KF95 mask.

Check out this list of COVID-protective gear sales, including masks, air cleaners compiled from @eiryngs.

Sign our petition to reinstate mask mandates in drug stores.

Public Health Advocacy works: after many testified on the efficacy and importance of masking on public transit, the New York MTA removed the inappropriate “you do you” campaign and replaced it with signs recommending masks.

Keep making noise! Testify virtually or in-person at the next MTA Board meeting on November 30th or submit a comment in favor of masks on NY public transit.

Internationally masks are making a come-back: In Canada, Burlington, Ontario has introduced a six-week indoor mask mandate, and Brazil reinstated its mask mandates on planes and transit.

Call for others to follow suit! A future where we prioritize community care is possible.

Instead of normalizing measures like tent hospitals and 250,000+ COVID deaths per year, join us in demanding public health measures: government investment in infrastructure for indoor air quality, mask mandates, paid sick leave and robust contact tracing.

Thursday is #WorldAIDSDay. Take action to demand @POTUS Biden & Congress address colliding global+domestic pandemics: #HIV, #LongCOVID, COVID, Ebola, cholera,TB, and more.

Notes: 1) The numbers in this report were current as of 11/24/22. The CDC updates data frequently as it receives refreshed information. Today’s numbers may be slightly different from the data here. 2) Check out the links throughout & see our website for more!

Share this: