Title: Older Adults Account for Majority of Hospitalizations Due to COVID-19 in the United States, CDC Report Finds
Subtitle: Urgent Action Needed to Protect Vulnerable Populations
In a recent report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it has been revealed that older adults have comprised nearly two-thirds of COVID-19 hospitalizations in the United States this year. From January through August, adults aged 65 and older accounted for approximately 63% of all COVID-19 hospitalizations, 61% of ICU admissions, and a staggering 88% of in-hospital deaths associated with the virus.
According to the CDC researchers, the majority of hospitalized older adults had underlying health conditions, making them more susceptible to severe complications from COVID-19. Alarmingly, less than a quarter of these patients had received the recommended vaccine at the time of hospitalization, highlighting the urgent need for increased vaccination rates among this vulnerable population.
The CDC is urging older adults to take immediate action in order to reduce their risk of severe illness. They recommend getting vaccinated against COVID-19, adopting measures such as mask-wearing and social distancing to reduce the risk of exposure, and seeking prompt treatment after receiving a positive test result.
Hospitalization rates among older adults have seen a drastic surge from July to late August, with rates among this age group significantly higher than those among younger age groups. The percentage of COVID-19 hospitalizations accounted for by adults aged 65 and older has increased by one-third from March 2020 to December 2022.
Disturbingly, the report reveals that three-quarters of older adults hospitalized during the first half of this year had not received the recommended vaccine at the time. Shockingly, 16% of these individuals had not received any COVID-19 vaccination whatsoever. This data highlights the urgent need for improved vaccine uptake among older adults.
Health officials are deeply concerned about the low vaccination rates among older adults, not only for COVID-19 but also for other respiratory illnesses such as the flu and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). With the upcoming fall season, experts strongly recommend that older adults, especially those aged 85 and older, receive the booster vaccine to provide them with enhanced protection against COVID-19 and other respiratory illnesses.
The findings of this report serve as a stark reminder of the vulnerability of older adults to severe illness and highlight the importance of vaccination in preventing hospitalization and fatalities. It is crucial that communities and healthcare providers prioritize efforts to increase vaccine accessibility and education for this high-risk population in order to protect their health and well-being.
By taking immediate action and ensuring higher vaccination rates among older adults, we can collectively work towards ending the devastating impact of COVID-19 and safeguarding the lives of those most at risk in our society.
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