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7 States Where COVID is Now "On Fire"

Be careful if you live here.
FACT CHECKED BY Emilia Paluszek

The good news is, cases nationwide are going down. "In fact, 40 states are contributing to this case decrease over the past week," said virus expert Dr. Michael Osterholm. "It's been remarkable, in many of the states, even in the Midwest, like Minnesota, Wisconsin, the Dakotas, are starting to see case numbers drop." However, there are states "where the number of cases are still double the national average. And if you take one—Alaska tops the list. If they were, in fact, a country they'd be in the top 10 countries in the world with the highest cadence rates." So which are the states that are most in danger right now? Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.


Colorado Will Start Rationing Care

Infected patient in quarantine lying in bed in hospital

"If Colorado's COVID-19 situation continues to worsen and the state moves to ration care, who gets all possible treatment would depend on a formula calculating the odds of surviving," reports the Denver Post. "On Thursday, Gov. Jared Polis said if the COVID-19 situation doesn't improve in the next few days, the state will have to take action to preserve hospital capacity. The state is offering monoclonal antibodies — a treatment option that can reduce the odds of hospitalization from COVID-19 — to more people, but state officials acknowledged that may not be enough. If cases and hospitalizations don't start falling soon, the state could call in health care teams from the Federal Emergency Management Agency; issue an order to remove barriers for moving patients between hospitals; halt non-emergency surgeries; or activate 'crisis standards of care.'"


Intensive Care Units are at Capacity in Utah

Top view of doctor and covid-19 patient with oxygen mask in bed in hospital, coronavirus concept.

"The Utah Department of Health on Thursday reported nine more COVID-19 deaths, including seven in the past day," reports the Salt Lake Tribune. "Two deaths reported Thursday occurred before Oct. 1 and were added to the death toll after further testing, the Health Department said. Four of those who died were under the age of 65 — including a man in Iron County between the ages of 18 and 24. The Health Department on Thursday reported 1,859 new coronavirus cases. The rolling seven-day average for positive tests stands at 1,547 per day. Intensive care units in the state remain near capacity. According to the Health Department, 93.7% of all ICU beds and 95.5% of ICU beds in larger medical centers are occupied. Of all ICU patients, 41.4% are being treated for COVID-19."


Montana Hospitalizations Remain High

Two exhausted and desperate surgeons.

"In Lewis and Clark County, and across Montana, the number of active COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations has remained high this month. At St. Peter's Health, leaders say it's been one of their most challenging times during the pandemic," reports KTVH. "It has been an exceptionally challenging week for us here, with record numbers of hospitalizations and very, very sick and very, very acutely ill patients hospitalized due to COVID," Katie Gallagher, COVID-19 public information officer for St. Peter's, told the station.


Idaho Hospitals are "Overburdened" With Patients

Doctor examining female patient in critical health conditions using a stethoscope in the intensive care unit of a modern hospital during covid-19 pandemic

"Hospitalizations and Idaho's test positivity rate continued a pattern of several weeks of decline this week, though caseloads remain high and hospitals remain overburdened with patients. As of Oct. 27 — the most recent data available — there were 525 patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 at Idaho hospitals, which is down from last month's peak of 793, but is still higher than during the surge last fall, when the peak was 496. In intensive care units, there were 147 COVID-19 patients on Oct. 27, down from the peak of 213 in September. Last December, the peak number of patients was 126," reports the Idaho Statesman.

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Nebraska, Don't Let Your Guard Down

Woman with face protective mask

"Don't let your guard down. COVID still haunts this area," warns Kearney Hub. "Susan Puckett, Two Rivers Public Health Department's community health nurse, blames a 'relaxed' public attitude for the fact that the Two Rivers COVID-19 risk dial has been parked in the red 'pandemic' level for the last six weeks." 

"A couple of smaller towns in the Two Rivers jurisdiction still have lots and lots and lots of COVID, especially in the Phelps and Dawson county areas. In Kearney, it's a steady stream," she said. "People hear national news that says COVID is declining. Then our efforts to keep it away begin to decline and we get a reverse effect. Wear your mask, and encourage everyone else to do the same," she said.

RELATED: Dr. Fauci's Signs You Already Had Coronavirus


Alaska is Faring the Worst

Doctors and infected patient in quarantine in hospita.

"Alaska on Friday reported four more COVID-19 deaths, just over 800 new cases of the virus and yet another day of high hospitalizations. The deaths involved two Anchorage men in their 50s and 70s, respectively, along with a Nome man in his 60s and a Soldotna man in his 80s or older," reports ADN. "Transmission of the virus appears to have plateaued somewhat over the past six to eight weeks, but case counts, hospitalizations and deaths statewide have remained stubbornly elevated, even as cases around the country have begun to fall."

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How to Stay Safe Out There

Brunette woman wearing a KN95 FPP2 mask.

Follow the public health fundamentals and help end this pandemic, no matter where you live—get vaccinated ASAP; if you live in an area with low vaccination rates, wear an N95 face mask, don't travel, social distance, avoid large crowds, don't go indoors with people you're not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.


Alek Korab
Alek Korab is a Co-Founder and Managing Editor of the ETNT Health channel on Eat This, Not That! Read more about Alek