Washington, 8 January 2022 (TDI): The United States saw a massive surge in COVID-19 cases triggered by the new Omicron variant. Hospitalizations have increased steadily since December and cases are projected to increase even more.

662,000 new COVID-19 cases were reported on Thursday with COVID hospitalizations nearing 123,000. An average of 1,400 deaths occur every day due to the virus.

States like New York had some of the highest numbers of hospitalizations with over 11,000 patients admitted in some form as a result of 42,334 new cases reported overall.

One of the major reasons for an increase in cases is the lack of vaccination. Over 37.8% of Americans choose not to get the vaccine.

“A lot of this is unnecessary death.” -Lynne Kokoczka, a clinical nurse specialist.

90% of patients in the intensive care units are unvaccinated according to Doctor Hassan Khouli, Chairman of the Department of Critical Care Medicine at the Academic Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio.

The increase in the cases has also laden immense pressure on healthcare workers. Many states including Virginia and Ohio have announced a delay in elective surgeries with other states like New York and Illinois recommending state-wide delays.

US hospitals have lost almost about $22.3 billion between March and May 2020. Over 3,100 workers have left their jobs in the healthcare sector because of the deteriorating situation.

“This is really taking a toll on our teams. Burnout is a major concern.” -Dr. Hasan Khouli

Dr. Jonathan Reiner, professor of medicine and surgery at George Washington University says January is going to be a difficult month but cases should subside shortly if trends in the United Kingdom and South Africa are any indication.

He also adds that the virus won’t ever completely go away and will most likely remain endemic for the indefinite future. Getting vaccinated may be the only way to coexist with the virus.

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