Cases increase 207% in three weeks as largest hospital in Mississippi turns garage into Covid ward


The average number of daily COVID-19 cases being reported in the U.S. is continuing to rise as hospitals across the country are reaching their breaking point. 

On Wednesday, America recorded 135,177 new cases of the virus with a seven-day rolling average of 122,788, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

This represents a 207 percent from the average of 39,939 reported three weeks ago and is the highest figure seen since February 3, when the average sat at 128,333, according to a DailyMail.com analysis.

Additionally, every state and the District of Columbia have seen Covid infections either increase or remain steady in the last seven days.  

Deaths are also on the rise, despite levels remaining far below those seen pre-vaccination. 

There were 342 virus-related fatalities recorded on Wednesday with a seven-day rolling average of 549, which is a 107 percent increase from the average of 264 reported three weeks prior and the highest number seen since June 2. 

However, about half as many deaths are being recorded as were during November 2020, the last time that cases and deaths were rising.  

Hospital says they are completely overwhelmed with patients and are struggling to find available beds as the number of patients surpassed 60,000.

In Mississippi, there are no intensive care unit (ICU) beds in the entire state while its largest hospital is coverting a parking garage to accommodate people sickened with the virus.

And in Louisiana, which is reporting a record-high number of patients, one doctor says lines for the emergency room (ER) spill out of the building.

The U.S. recorded 184,346 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday with a seven-day rolling average of 122,788, a 207% increase from the average reported three weeks ago

There were 492 virus-related deaths recorded on Wednesday with a seven-day rolling average of 514, up 107% from three weeks ago, but half as many as being recorded in winter 2020 before vaccines were available

There were 492 virus-related deaths recorded on Wednesday with a seven-day rolling average of 514, up 107% from three weeks ago, but half as many as being recorded in winter 2020 before vaccines were available

Every state and the District of Columbia have seen Covid infections either increase or remain steady in the last seven days

Every state and the District of Columbia have seen Covid infections either increase or remain steady in the last seven days

Hospitals across the country say they are overwhelmed with patients and are reaching their breaking points as the number of hospitalizations surpass 60,000

Hospitals across the country say they are overwhelmed with patients and are reaching their breaking points as the number of hospitalizations surpass 60,000

In Mississippi, COVID-19 hospitalizations currently sit at 1,303 which is the third highest total recorded in a single day and a 107 percent increase from the 628 patients seen two weeks ago, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The state’s largest hospital, the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC), is so overrun with patients that it is converting the bottom floor of its parking garage into a Covid ward. 

UMMC says it doesn’t have enough staff to care for patients at the hospital and has been asking the federal government to deploy teams to Mississippi.

State health official Jim Craig said on Wednesday that the states has asked the federal government to help deal with the surge. 

On Tuesday, UMMC Vice Chancellor Dr LouAnne Woodward said there were no ICU beds left in the Mississippi and that the state is currently ‘in distress.’  

‘There were ZERO available ICU beds in Mississippi as of early this morning. None,’ Woodward tweeted

‘That means hospitals across the state may not be able to provide the level of care needed to you or your loved one. Not just for COVID-19 but FOR ANY EMERGENCY CARE.

‘UCU bed availability is an indicator of the strain COVID is placing on MS hospitals. We are caught up in a wave. Is it a rising wave, a crest? We won’t know until it has receded, but right now MS is in distress.’

COVID-19 hospitalizations in Mississippi currently sit at 1,303, a 107% increase from the 628 patients seen two weeks ago

COVID-19 hospitalizations in Mississippi currently sit at 1,303, a 107% increase from the 628 patients seen two weeks ago

There are no ICU beds in all of Mississippi (above) and the state's largest hospital is converting the bottom level of a parking garage into a Covid ward

There are no ICU beds in all of Mississippi (above) and the state’s largest hospital is converting the bottom level of a parking garage into a Covid ward

According to the Mississippi Department of Health, 90 percent of people hospitalized with the virus between July 24 and August 10 were unvaccinated.

In the Magnolia State, just 42.4 percent of residents have at least one shot and 35.4 percent are fully vaccinated, CDC data reveal.

During a news conference on Wednesday, Woodward said the parking garage being turned into a patient ward is merely a ‘Band-Aid’ to deal with the rise in patients. 

‘The big solution is, let’s get this surge under control and let’s get the spread of this virus under control, and the way that we do that is by getting people vaccinated. That is the big thing,’ she said.

Meanwhile, in Texas, hospitalizations are also continuing to surge.

There are currently 9,915 residents hospitalized with the virus – lower than the record 13,000 recorded in July but an increase of 102 percent from the 4,895 seen two weeks earlier.

Dr Esmaeil Porsa, CEO and President of Houston’s Harris Health Systems – which includes Ben Taub Hospital and Lyndon B Johnson Hospital – said wards are filling up with patients.

‘My hospitals are full…What is concerning is the rate by which our Covid-positive patients are increasing,’ he told CNN’s New Day

Ben Taub Hospital’s ICU is 95 percent capacity and Lyndon B Johnson Hospital is at 100 percent ICU capacity. Tents have been set up outside the latter to handle the overflow of patients. 

Porsa said 98 of patients hospitalized in the hospital’s system since January 1 are unvaccinated. Just 53.6 percent of Texans have received at least one vaccine dose and 44.7 are fully vaccinated, both figures of which are below the national average, according to the CDC.

Porsa warned that if the state does not get its surge urge control, it will be disastrous. 

A total of 9,915 Texas residents are  hospitalized with the virus, an increase of 102% from the 4,895 seen two weeks earlier

A total of 9,915 Texas residents are  hospitalized with the virus, an increase of 102% from the 4,895 seen two weeks earlier

Dr Esmaeil Porsa, CEO and President of Harris Health Systems, warned of 'disaster' as tents were erected outside one of his hospitals - Lyndon B Johnson Hospital - in Houston, Texas to deal with an overflow of patients

Dr Esmaeil Porsa, CEO and President of Harris Health Systems, warned of ‘disaster’ as tents were erected outside one of his hospitals – Lyndon B Johnson Hospital – in Houston, Texas to deal with an overflow of patients 

In Louisiana, 2,631 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 - the highest single-day total and a 102% increase from the 1,299 seen just 14 days prior

In Louisiana, 2,631 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 – the highest single-day total and a 102% increase from the 1,299 seen just 14 days prior

‘Five weeks from now, if this continues to go at the rate it is right now – and again, I emphasize that I don’t see any intervention, any mitigating interventions being put in place to try to slow this down – this will be a disaster,’ he told New Day. 

‘We don’t live in isolation. This is not about personal freedom or individual choice. One person’s personal freedom should not infringe on other people’s freedom and rights to being healthy and out of the hospital.’

In Louisiana, the state is continuing to break records for hospitalizations.

Currently, there are are 2,631 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 – the highest single-day total and a 102 percent increase from the 1,299 seen just 14 days prior, CDC data show.

Four of Louisiana’s nine health say they have fewer than 10 ICU beds available. 

‘I’ve never seen anything like this,’ Dr Michael Hill, an infectious disease specialist at the St Tammany Parish health system, said at press conference on Tuesday. 

‘Our hospitals are being overwhelmed. Don’t believe me? Come by the ER. There are lines now around the building because there are no seats in our waiting area.’ 

Low vaccination rates have been blamed for the spread with just 45.4 percent of residents receiving at least an initial shot and 37.8 completing their vaccine series. 





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