COVID-19 Update: 4/21/22

US COVID-19 case count reaches 80,588,854

(RxWiki News) The pandemic is more than two years old, and it's still going strong. Here's what you need to know.

After sharp declines in total cases in recent months, COVID-19 case rates in the United States have started trending up again.

These new infections are being driven largely by two highly infectious subvariants of the Omicron variant, according to health officials.

The total number cases of COVID-19 recorded in the US continues to climb, although much more slowly than at past points in the pandemic. As of publication time, US health officials had recorded 80,588,854 cases of COVID-19 — an increase of just under 1 million cases over the past month.

The total number of US deaths from COVID-19 was coming closer to the 1 million mark at 987,034. That means roughly 18,000 people have reportedly died from COVID-19 over the past month.

On a brighter note, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that 82.2 percent of people in the US who were at least 5 years old had received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Meanwhile, health officials and researchers continue to change recommendations based on changes in the pandemic. Earlier this week, a federal judge struck down a mask mandate that applied to public transportation throughout the country, and President Biden said the decision whether to wear a mask in a crowded indoor public space is up to the individual.

It's important to note that, while masks are not legally required in certain contexts anymore, they are still recommended in crowded indoor spaces by most health professionals.

On the COVID innovation front, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently authorized a rapid COVID-19 breath test. This first-of-its-kind test is expected to be used in places that require rapid testing of large numbers of people, such as retirement homes, prisons and schools.

Health officials continue to recommend COVID-19 vaccines and boosters for most people. Reach out to your health care provider to make sure you're up to date on all of your vaccinations.

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Review Date: 
April 19, 2022