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New COVID Cases Plunge 25% or More as Behavior Changes

Nationally, new cases have dropped 21% from the prior week, according to Department of Health and Human Services data.

MEDSCAPE —

A dozen states are reporting drops of 25% or more in new covid-19 cases and more than 1,200 counties have seen the same, federal data released Wednesday shows. Experts say the plunge may relate to growing fear of the virus after it reached record-high levels, as well as soaring hopes of getting vaccinated soon.

Nationally, new cases have dropped 21% from the prior week, according to Department of Health and Human Services data, reflecting slightly more than 3,000 counties. Corresponding declines in hospitalization and death may take days or weeks to arrive, and the battle against the deadly virus rages on at record levels in many places.

Health officials, data modeling experts and epidemiologists agreed it’s too early to see a bump from the vaccine rollout that started with health care workers in late December and has, in many states, moved on to include older Americans.

Instead, they said, the factors involved are more likely behavior-driven, with people settling back home after the holidays, or reacting to news of hospital beds running out in places like Los Angeles. Others are finding the resolve to wear masks and physically distance with the prospect of a vaccine becoming more immediate.

READ MORE AT MEDSCAPE

PHOTO CREDIT: sergio santos

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