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Virginia breaks record for COVID hospitalizations; which regions are seeing 'significant increases'

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Posted at 3:11 PM, Jan 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-07 17:18:27-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- Virginia COVID-19 hospitalizations topped 3,300 Friday for the first time since the start of the pandemic nearly two years ago.

There were 3,329 patients in hospitals who were either positive or had test results pending as of Friday, according to the Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association (VHHA). The Commonwealth's previous high of 3,201 hospitalizations happened on Jan. 13, 2021, during the third surge of the pandemic.

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Virginia topped 3,201 COVID hospitalizations happened on Jan. 13, 2021, during the pandemic's third wave, according to the Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association.

Officials with the hospital association warned COVID hospitalizations are up nearly 200 percent across across all regions over the past month. However, Virginia's Central, Eastern and Northern regions are seeing "significant increases."

Julian Walker with the VHHA called the current situation "serious" and pointed out that hospitalizations metrics tend to slightly lag behind rising case counts.

Virginia also reported its highest ever number of COVID-19 cases Friday with 18,309 cases. Last Friday was Virginia's second highest ever day with 17,618 cases.

Virginia's seven-day positivity rate is 32.4%, which is up from 21.1% Friday, Dec. 31, up from 11.4% Friday, Dec. 24 and up from 8.5% Friday, Dec. 17.

"If things remain on the current trajectory for an extended period, we could face the possibility of straining the limits of the system’s capacity," Walker said.

RELATED: People with mild COVID-19 symptoms urged to avoid ERs

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In order to deal with this fifth surge, Walker said hospitals are making operational changes like scaling back or postponing non-emergency procedures, implementing visitation restrictions and reallocating staff.

"While each facility and the situation it is confronting is unique, hospitals and their teams have consistently adapted to meet the challenges presented by the pandemic," Walker said.

Data continues to show most patients currently hospitalized for COVID-19 are not fully vaccinated, according to Walker.

"We also continue to urge unvaccinated Virginians to get vaccinated and boosted as a way to reduce their risk of infection and/or serious illness that leads to hospitalization, both for individual, family, and community health and so as not to further strain hospitals and their team members on the frontlines of the pandemic," Walker said.

Nearly 68% of Virginia's population is considered fully vaccinated against COVID-19 compared to nearly 78% of people who have received at least one dose of a vaccine, according to the Virginia Department of Health. Additionally more than 2 million booster doses have been administered in the state.

There have been more than 15,600 COVID-19-linked deaths in Virginia since the pandemic's start. Additionally, data show more than 80,700 hospitalized COVID-19 patients have gone home from the hospital since beginning of the pandemic. That includes more than 6,000 patients discharged between Dec. 5, 2021 and Jan. 7, 2022.

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COVID-19

TRACKING COVID IN VIRGINIA: WEEK-BY-WEEK COMPARISON

Week of Dec. 25-31
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +69,182
People Hospitalized: +1,516
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +293

Week of Dec. 18-24
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +35,94
People Hospitalized: +383
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +211

Week of Dec. 11-17
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +19,321
People Hospitalized: -383*
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +188

Week of Dec. 4-10
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +17,470
People Hospitalized: +459
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +142

Week of Nov. 27-Dec. 3
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +12,860
People Hospitalized: +316
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +118

Week of Nov. 20-26
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +10,279
People Hospitalized: -113*
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +143

Week of Nov. 13-19
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +10,623
People Hospitalized: +277
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +171

Week of Nov. 6-12
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +9,295
People Hospitalized: +310
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +196

Week of Oct. 30-Nov. 5
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +8,771
People Hospitalized: +380
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +218

Week of Oct. 23-29
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +10,016
People Hospitalized: +448
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +239

Week of Oct. 16-22
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +11,817
People Hospitalized: +502
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +277

Week of Oct. 9-15
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +14,779
People Hospitalized: +503
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +316

Week of Oct. 4-8
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +18,831
People Hospitalized: +553
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +269

Week of Sept. 27-Oct. 1
Positive COVID-19 Cases: +19,463
People Hospitalized: +579
COVID-19-Linked Deaths: +295

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Mass COVID-19 vaccination clinic at Richmond Raceway.

Virginians age 5+ are eligible for COVID-19 vaccine. Go to Vaccine Finder to search for specific vaccines available near you or call 877-VAX-IN-VA (877-275-8343).

Depend on CBS 6 News and WTVR.com for the most complete coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic.