Health officials encouraged, cautious about current COVID trends

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) – Public health officials are keeping an eye on the decreasing COVID Trends, as cases of an Omicron subvariant rise in the US

The Kansas Dept. of Health and Environment’s Wednesday Dashboard update added 265 new COVID cases since Monday, along with 48 deaths and 87 hospitalizations. KDHE notes deaths may take time to show up in their totals, as records are Verified.

The percent of tests coming back positive last week fell to 1.9 percent.

All of the cases KDHE has sequenced over the past five weeks have been the Omicron variant, with no cases of the subvariant BA.2 noted. Nationally, though, the CDC said BA.2 is now making up 34 percent of new infections. Even though it’s thought to be more contagious, Dr. Anthony Fauci said Wednesday he doesn’t expect another dramatic case of surge due to Immunity stemming from both vaccination and the winter Omicron wave.

The CDC also says hospital Admissions Nationwide are down 90 percent from January’s Omicron-related Peak. In Topeka, the University of Kansas Health System in St. Francis had one COVID-positive inpatient Tuesday and two Wednesday. Stormont Vail had five COVID-positive inpatients on Tuesday, but no patients in its enhanced primary care program, which is designed to give closer attention to patients with moderate symptoms to keep them from getting to the point of needing hospitalization.

Overall, the number of active clusters in Kansas also continue to drop. KDHE showed 90 this week, down from 133 a week earlier. Of those, 71 are in long-term care facilities.

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