COVID Cases, Hospitalizations Remain Steady, While ICUs Become More Packed

Oct. 4, 2021, 1:45 p.m. ·

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COVID-19 cases in Nebraska rose slightly this week after falling for more than a week, according to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

As of Friday, just more than 680 Nebraskans tested positive for the virus each day. That number had fallen from a high 840 during the peak of the latest Delta surge in mid-September. Now, cases in the state are leveling off and continue trickling in a mostly downward trajectory – just like the rest of the country.

Hospitalization trends seem to follow the cases. As of Sunday, 411 Nebraskans were hospitalized with COVID, according to the state's dashboard. That’s about 11% of the state’s hospital beds. This number has also gone slightly up and down over the past few weeks.

The plateau of pandemic indicators comes as the dashboard also shows an worsening picture in hospitals: beds are becoming increasingly harder and harder to find. While COVID hospitalizations are staying pretty level, others are not. The latest figures: 78% of adult ICUs are occupied right now, while 79% of pediatric ICUs are full. The demand for regular medical and surge beds is also seeing a rise. Gov. Pete Ricketts extended a directed health measure addressing hospital capacity last week.

More than 2,300 people get a COVID vaccine each day in Nebraska, according to the dashboard. Vaccination figures have, for the most part, slowly fallen since the spring. As of Sunday, 67% of the eligible population was fully vaccinated, while another 5% remained partially vaccinated.