New Covid Variant Wreaks Havoc; These Are the 9 States With the Highest Number of Cases

By: Lauren | Last updated: Nov 11, 2023

According to the CDC, the newest COVID-19 variant is running rampant in the USA, but only in some states.

A recent map released by the organization shows that while positive COVID tests have decreased slightly overall, there are certain areas where positivity rates are still higher than is considered safe.

Positive COVID Test Statistics

The CDC continually collects data from COVID-19 tests around the country. While it cannot quantify how many home tests have been used, of the 50,579 nucleic acid and amplification tests that were taken last week, 14.3% were positive.


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And although it’s only by 0.1%, that positive test rating has fallen from the previous, which came in at 14.4%.

Positivity Rate Is Highest in Region Six

The CDC divides the country into ten regions, and according to its data, region six has the highest positivity rate among COVID-19 tests.


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Region six includes Teas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Louisiana. Of all the people in these states who took COVID-19 tests, 17.3% tested positive for the virus.

Region Seven Isn’t Far Behind

The CDC also reported that region seven, including Iowa, Missouri, Nebraska, and Kansas, came in a close second.


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According to the collected data, 16.4% of all COVID-19 tests taken in these states had positive results. These numbers prove that while COVID-19 is less of a problem than it was last week and certainly less than last year, it’s still a prevalent and dangerous virus.

These 9 States Have the Highest COVID-19 Positivity Rates

If you were to break it down by state instead of by region as the CDC does, there are clearly nine states that are reporting much higher COVID-19 positivity than the national average.


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What’s interesting about these nine states, including New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Missouri, is that other than New Mexico, they are all red states, meaning they are governed by Republicans versus Democrats.

The States With the Lowest Positivity Rates

On the other hand, the states with the lowest positivity rates last week were found in regions three and one. Most of which are governed by Democratic politicians as opposed to Republicans.

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Region three has the lowest ratings overall, with only 10.4% positivity in testing. The states included in this region are Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia.


Region One Only Reported 12.4% Positivity

Of the thousands of people who took COVID-19 tests in region one last week, only 12.4% came back with positive results.

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Region one includes the northeasternmost states of Maine, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Vermont, and Rhode Island.


Positivity Rates Are Down, But Hospitalization Is Up

Interestingly, according to the CDC data, while positivity rates are down around the country, hospitalization due to COVID-19 is up.

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Last week, only 19,068 Americans reported to their nearest hospital with symptoms from the virus, whereas this week, ending on September 9th, 20,538 checked into a hospital experiencing COVID-19.


The New Variant: BA.2.86 Could Be Causing This Increase

Many believe that this increase in hospitalizations is being caused by the newest variation of the virus that the CDC is calling BA.2.86.

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People in at least ten states have tested positive for BA.2.86, which is a highly mutated version of COVID-19. The CDC is absolutely paying attention to this variation as they worry it will cause even more damage and possibly death than the original strain.


A New Booster Has Arrived

In response to the BA.2.86 variant, the CDC has recently released a new booster to hospitals around the country.

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The boosters are essentially updated versions of the existing vaccine that will continue to protect people from the ever-changing virus. And although some Americans have resisted the boosters, the CDC still claims that they are not only safe but highly effective.


Many Americans Will Not Take the Newest Booster

While many Americans believe that the vaccine and many boosters released by the CDC could be dangerous, most believe that they will help protect from extreme illness or death due to the virus.

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However, that doesn’t mean everyone is taking them. In fact, the large majority of Americans didn’t even take the last booster in 2022 as they simply didn’t feel it was necessary.


Will COVID Continue to Be a Problem in the USA?

Americans have been suffering from COVID-19 and variations of the virus for the past three years. And while many had hoped that the pandemic would be over in the near future, it doesn’t look like that’s the case.

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The CDC expects the virus to continue to mutate and affect Americans with symptoms and maybe even death, and therefore, they continue to recommend that all citizens get the necessary boosters as they are released.