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Minnesota’s Covid-19 ICU hospitalizations are down 74% from their December peak

Last week, I noted that Minnesota’s Covid-19 ICU hospitalizations were down 70% from their December peak. Happily, the improvement in our state’s Covid-19 hospitalization numbers continues.

Data from the Minnesota Department of Health, seen in Figure 1, shows that, in the seven days up to and including January 26th, average total ICU hospitalizations in the state were 919. This is down by 13% (152 beds) from the peak of the seven days up to and including November 21st and is below any number since the seven days up to and including July 25th. Capacity remains at 1,212, 34% down from November.

A large part of this has been driven by the continuing fall in the number of Minnesotans requiring ICU treatment for Covid-19. For the seven days up to and including January 26th, this number averaged 102. This is down by 74% (286 beds) from the peak of the seven days up to and including December 1st/2nd and is below any number since the seven days up to and including September 25th. After a increase from early December, ICU hospitalizations for non-Covid-19 patients are also falling, which has also driven the decline in total numbers.

Figure 1: ICU hospitalizations in Minnesota, seven day moving average

Source: Department of Health

The story is much the same with hospitalizations generally, as Figure 2 shows. In the seven days up to and including January 26th, average total non-ICU hospitalizations in the state were 5,924. This is down by 14% (982 beds) from the peak of the seven days up to and including November 10th and is below any number between the seven days up to and including June 15th, when the data starts, and December 22nd.

Again, a large part of this has been driven by the continuing fall in the number of Minnesotans requiring non-ICU hospital treatment for Covid-19. For the seven days up to and including January 26th, this number averaged 418. This is down by 71% (1,008 beds) from the peak of the seven days up to and including November 25th and is below any number since the seven days up to and including October 24th. The increase in non-Covid-19 non-ICU hospitalizations which began in late December is leveling off.

Figure 2: Non-ICU hospitalizations in Minnesota, seven day moving average

Source: Department of Health

As I wrote last week, each hospitalization and each death is a tragedy. But we must not be blinded to good news when it comes, and these numbers are good news.

John Phelan is an economist at the Center of the American Experiment. 

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