The Department of Health and Human Services' (HHS) latest figures place intensive care unit (ICU) capacity of hospitals at over 90 percent in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi and Texas.
Numbers gathered through HHS' Protect Public Data Hub place taken ICU beds in Alabama at 100 percent, leading the nation. Florida and Mississippi face similar challenges with their ICU beds at 94 percent capacity. Similarly, Georgia and Texas each find their ICUs 93 percent full. Arkansas was the final state to crack the 90 percent mark, with its ICU at 90.4 percent capacity.
Overnight Health Care: Democrats set sights on program to fill gap in Medicaid expansion
Welcome to Overnight Health Care. COVID-19 vaccines aren't perfect. The viral "Fork Hands" returns to explain how you can still get infected even if you're vaccinated. If you have any tips, email us at [email protected], [email protected] and [email protected] Follow us on Twitter at @NateWeixel, @PeterSullivan4, and @JustineColeman8.Today: The Pentagon is requiring military members to get vaccinated against COVID-19 immediately. Meanwhile, Texas is banning vaccine mandates regardless of approval status. And hospital ICUs across the country are rapidly filling up.
Hospitals across the nation continue to face crowding issues as the Delta variant surges across the country. Latest estimates by the CDC hold the emerging variant responsible for 93 percent of all new cases. As the variant continues to infect both vaccinated and unvaccinated people, states have started reimplementing COVID-19 precautions. However, many of the states listed have placed individual freedoms over public health interests.
"We are not shutting down," Florida's Republican Governor Ron DeSantis said in early August as cases began to surge. "We are going to have schools open. We are protecting every Floridian's job in this state. We are protecting people's small businesses. These interventions have failed time and time again throughout this pandemic, not just in the United States but abroad."
Is there a delta variant test? What we know about tracking COVID-19 cases in the US
As delta variant cases continue to rise throughout the U.S., here's what we know about COVID-19 testing – regardless if you're vaccinated or not.As cases continue to rise, mask mandates are making a comeback throughout the country. Companies like McDonald's, Apple and Disney have announced a face mask requirement in the past week.
DeSantis issued an executive order on May 3 that banned local government and school systems from instituting COVID-19 restrictions, including mask mandates. Texas' Republican Governor Greg Abbott issued a similar ban on masks. Republican Governors Brian Kemp of Georgia and Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas briefly tried to implement similar bans but were thwarted in their efforts. Despite receiving calls to implement bans, Republican Governors Kay Ivey of Alabama and Tate Reeves of Mississippi have not issued bans.
Messaging around vaccination has differed between the six states but all feature some of the lowest vaccination rates in the country. Alabama holds the lowest rate of fully vaccinated people in the United States at 37 percent. Mississippi holds the number two spot, also at 37 percent. Arkansas is the sixth least vaccinated state at 40 percent. Georgia is eighth, also at 40 percent. Texas is the 17th least at 46 percent, and Florida is the 30th most vaccinate state at 52 percent.
Mariachi Mass, water cutbacks, Maine bicentennial: News from around our 50 states
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While the vaccine has been shown to protect against hospitalizations and death in studies in reports by the CDC, the agency stated that vaccinated people can still catch and spread the disease. The CDC urges indoor mask wearing and exercising caution in crowded spaces.
Despite catching COVID himself, Abbott remains set on keeping Texas regulation free. The governor recently asked the State Attorney General to file an appeal to a ruling by the state's Supreme Court that granted a county the right to implement a mandate in its school. While masking and vaccines will remain optional in Texas for the foreseeable future, Abbott had this to say about his experience being infected despite having the vaccine.
Parties campaign ahead of Morocco's pivotal elections
RABAT, Morocco (AP) — Politicians from dozens of political parties were campaigning for a final day Tuesday, trying to reach out to millions of Moroccans despite social distancing measures a day before pivotal legislative, regional and local elections, with a moderate Islamist party hoping to remain at the helm of government. Strict safety guidelines in place as the North African kingdom grapples with a new wave of COVID-19 have restricted campaigning, and candidates’ ability to reach the 18 million eligible voters, half the country’s population.
"I am told that my infection was brief and mild because of the vaccination that I received, so I encourage others who have not received the vaccination to consider getting one," he said. "I will continue to quarantine as recommended by doctors. And, I will keep working on issues affecting Texas."
How the Army's elite Delta Force pulled off a record-setting mission against the Taliban only weeks after 9/11 .
In the hours after the September 11 attacks, the US military began planning what remains the longest air assault ever conducted by US forces. See more stories on Insider's business page. Hours after the September 11 attacks, the US military was already planning a response against the masterminds in Al Qaeda and its host in Afghanistan, the Taliban.Policymakers and military planners discussed several courses of action. CIA and Army Special Forces teams would infiltrate from the north and south and work with local anti-Taliban forces.But something more was needed.