Important update: Healthcare facilities
CDC has updated select ways to operate healthcare systems effectively in response to COVID-19 vaccination. Learn more
Given new evidence on the B.1.617.2 (Delta) variant, CDC has updated the guidance for fully vaccinated people. CDC recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status. Children should return to full-time in-person learning in the fall with layered prevention strategies in place.
The White House announced that vaccines will be required for international travelers coming into the United States, with an effective date of November 8, 2021. For purposes of entry into the United States, vaccines accepted will include FDA approved or authorized and WHO Emergency Use Listing vaccines. More information is available here.
Travel requirements to enter the United States are changing, starting November 8, 2021. More information is available here.

A Better Data Picture

A Better Data Picture
Updated Jan. 20, 2023
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Interpretive Summary for January 20, 2023

A Better Data Picture

outline of map of US with high-risk people wearing masks

For the past two years, COVID-19 has dominated respiratory disease activity in the United States, with other respiratory viruses circulating at lower levels than usual. But that trend has changed this year—flu and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) have been on the rise, especially among children. The combination of flu, RSV, and COVID-19 has strained healthcare systems this fall and winter. Therefore, it is important to continue to track COVID-19 on its own, but also in the context of these other respiratory illnesses and hospital use overall.

CDC recently released three new tools that allow people to see hospitalization and emergency department data and compare trends across seasons and by respiratory disease type.

  • COVID Data Tracker’s Hospital Capacity and Utilization page is a centralized location for hospital-related data that is updated daily. It tracks overall inpatient bed occupancy, COVID-19 inpatient bed occupancy, overall ICU bed occupancy, and COVID-19 ICU bed occupancy, by state and hospital bed type (adult and pediatric).
  • The Respiratory Virus Hospitalization Surveillance Network (RESP-NET) interactive dashboard displays data on respiratory virus-associated hospitalizations. It’s updated weekly to help public health professionals visualize trends in virus circulation, estimate disease burden, and respond to outbreaks.
  • The National Emergency Department Visits for COVID-19, Influenza, and Respiratory Syncytial Virus dashboard, which is updated weekly, displays data on emergency department patient visits with diagnosed COVID-19, influenza, or RSV. By tracking patients in emergency departments with these respiratory virus infections, public health professionals can detect unusual levels of certain respiratory illnesses, which can serve as an early warning system for troubling increases or outbreaks.

Tracking hospitalizations and emergency department visits overall and associated with respiratory viruses can help public health officials detect, understand, and monitor health events and strain on our healthcare system. It can also help people make decisions such as choosing to mask in public to protect themselves and others from respiratory illness, including COVID-19.

What's New

COVID-19 Community Levels*

As of January 19, 2023, there are 196 (6.1%) counties, districts, or territories with a high COVID-19 Community Level, 1,010 (31.4%) with a medium Community Level, and 2,011 (62.5%) with a low Community Level. Compared with last week, the number of counties, districts, or territories in the high level decreased by 7.5%, in the medium level decreased by 6.9%, and in the low level increased by 14.4%. Overall, 48 out of 52 jurisdictions had high- or medium-level counties this week. Arizona, Washington, Nevada, and Utah are the only jurisdictions to have all counties at low Community Levels.

To check your COVID-19 Community Level, visit COVID Data Tracker. To learn which prevention measures are recommended based on your COVID-19 Community Level, visit COVID-19 Community Level and COVID-19 Prevention.

*CDC recommends use of COVID-19 Community Levels to determine the impact of COVID-19 on communities and to take action. CDC also provides Community Transmission Levels to describe the amount of COVID-19 spread within each county. Healthcare facilities use Community Transmission Levels to determine infection control interventions.

**Includes the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

U.S. COVID-19 Community Levels by County

A map of the United States showing COVID-19 Community Levels green is low, yellow is medium, orange is high, grey is no data

Reported Cases

As of January 18, 2023, the current 7-day average of weekly new cases (47,459) decreased 23.9% compared with the previous 7-day average (62,397). A total of 101,873,730 COVID-19 cases have been reported in the United States as of January 18, 2023.

Total Cases Reported

Current 7-Day Average*

Previous 7-Day Average

Change in 7-Day Average since Previous Period

*Historical cases are excluded from weekly new cases and 7-day average calculations until they are incorporated into the dataset for the applicable date. Of 21,397 historical cases reported retroactively, none were reported in the current week and none in the prior week.

Weekly Trends in COVID-19 Cases in the United States Reported to CDC

Weekly trends in COVID-19 cases in the United States reported to CDC

COVID-19 Variants

CDC Nowcast projections* for the week ending January 21, 2023, estimate the proportion of lineages designated as Omicron with estimates above 1%: BA.5—and three of its sublineages (BQ.1, BQ.1.1, and BF.7)—and BA.2 sublineages BA.2.75, BN.1, XBB, and XBB.1.5.

The most prevalent Omicron lineages this week are XBB.1.5, projected to be 49.1% (95% PI 37.5-60.8%), and BQ.1.1, projected to be 26.9% (95% PI 20.9-33.9%). BQ.1, XBB, BA.5, BN.1, BF.7, and BA.2.75 are all projected to be between 1% and 15% of circulating viruses.

XBB.1.5 is growing in proportion in all HHS regions. All other virus lineages are predicted to have very slow or no growth in proportion.

See COVID Data Tracker for the proportions of all relevant lineages currently circulating.


*CDC uses Nowcast projections to predict current variant proportions circulating in the United States. The median time from specimen collection to sequence data reporting is about 3 weeks. As a result, weighted estimates for the most recent few weeks may be unstable or unavailable. View Nowcast estimates on CDC’s COVID Data Tracker website on the Variant Proportions page.


As of January 18, 2023, 667.8 million vaccine doses have been administered in the United States. Overall, about 229.5 million people, or 69.1% of the total U.S. population, have completed a primary series.* More than 41 million people, or 19.6% of the eligible U.S. population ages 5 years and older, have received an updated (bivalent) booster dose.

Vaccine Doses Administered

Updated (Bivalent) Booster Doses Administered

People who have completed a primary series* (69.1% of the U.S. population)

People who have received an updated (bivalent) booster (19.6% of the eligible U.S. population)

Percentage point change from last week

Percentage point change from last week

*Represents the number of people who have received the second dose in a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine series (such as the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, or Novavax vaccines) or one dose of the single-shot Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.

Daily Change in the Total Number of Administered COVID-19 Vaccine Doses Reported to CDC by the Date of Administration, United States

red line

7-Day moving average

Daily Change in the Total Number of Administered COVID-19 Vaccine Doses Reported to CDC by the Date of Administration, United States

COVID-19 Updated (Bivalent) Booster Dose Administration, United States

COVID-19 updated (bivalent) booster dose administration in the United States booster legend


New Hospital Admissions

The current 7-day daily average for January 10–16, 2023, was 5,014. This is a 16.4% decrease from the prior 7-day average (5,997) from January 3–9, 2023.

Total New Admissions

Current 7-Day Average

Prior 7-Day Average

Change in 7-Day Average

The start of consistent reporting of hospital admissions data was August 1, 2020.

Daily Trends in Number of New COVID-19 Hospital Admissions in the United States

Daily trends in number of new COVID-19 hospital admissions in the United States

New admissions are pulled from a 10 am EDT snapshot of the HHS Unified Hospital Data – Analytic Dataset. Due to potential reporting delays, data from the most recent 7 days, as noted in the figure above with the grey bar, should be interpreted with caution. Small shifts in historic data may also occur due to changes in the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Provider of Services file, which is used to identify the cohort of included hospitals.


CDC’s Respiratory Virus Hospitalization Surveillance Network (RESP-NET) comprises three networks that conduct population-based surveillance for laboratory-confirmed hospitalizations associated with COVID-19, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), and influenza among children and adults. The rates presented on the RESP-NET interactive dashboard can be used to follow trends and comparisons of COVID-19, RSV, and influenza-associated hospitalization rates in different demographic groups, including by age, sex, race and ethnicity, and across seasons.

RESP-NET shows that COVID-19-associated hospitalizations among adults 65 years and older are likely increasing, with a rate of 44.3 per 100,000 population for the week ending December 31, 2022.

Weekly Rates of Respiratory Virus-Associated Hospitalizations among Adults Ages 65 Years and Older

RESP-NET: COVID-19 Associated Hospitalization Rates among Adults Ages 65 Years and Older

The dashed lines for the current season indicate potential reporting delays and interpretation of trends should exclude data from recent weeks. Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)-Associate­­d Hospitalization Surveillance Network (COVID-NET), a RESP-NET platform, is an additional source for hospitalization data collected through a network of more than 250 acute-care hospitals in 13 states (representing ~10% of the U.S. population). Detailed data on patient demographics, including race and ethnicity, underlying medical conditions, medical interventions, and clinical outcomes, are collected using a standardized case reporting form.



The current 7-day average of new deaths (565) decreased 6.1% compared with the previous 7-day average (601). As of January 18, 2023, a total of 1,099,866 COVID-19 deaths have been reported in the United States.

Total Deaths Reported

Current 7-Day Average*

Prior 7-Day Average

Change in 7-Day Average Since Prior Period

*Historical deaths are excluded from the weekly new deaths and 7-day average calculations until they are incorporated into the dataset by their applicable date. Of 3,838 historical deaths reported retroactively, none were reported in the current week and 86 were reported in the prior week.

Weekly Trends in Number of COVID-19 Deaths in the United States Reported to CDC

Weekly trends in number of COVID-19-associated deaths in the United States reported to CDC More Death Data


The percentage of COVID-19 NAATs (nucleic acid amplification tests)* that are positive is decreasing in comparison to the previous week. The 7-day average of percent positivity from NAATs is now 12.3%. The 7-day average number of tests reported for January 6–12, 2023, was 306,307, down 11.6% from 346,677 for the prior 7 days.

Total Tests Reported

7-Day Average Tests Reported

7-Day Average % Positivity

Previous 7-Day Average % Positivity

Percentage point change in 7-Day Average % Positivity since Prior Week

*Test for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19

COVID-19 NAAT Laboratory Test 7-day Percent Positivity by State/Territory

US map showing COVID-19 NAAT Laboratory Test 7-day Percent Positivity.

Wastewater Surveillance

COVID Data Tracker’s Wastewater Surveillance tab tracks levels, changes, and detections of SARS-CoV-2* viral RNA in wastewater at over 980 testing sites across the country.

Currently, about 46% of sites across the country are reporting moderate to high SARS-CoV-2 levels in wastewater. About 48% of sites reporting wastewater data are currently seeing some of the highest levels for those sites since December 1, 2021. About 61% of sites are experiencing a decrease in SARS-CoV-2 levels, and about 28% are reporting an increase.

For more information on how to use wastewater data, visit CDC’s wastewater surveillance website.

*The virus that causes COVID-19

SARS-CoV-2 Levels in Wastewater by Site

SARS-CoV-2 levels in wastewater by site white dot new site, blue dot 0% to 19%, light blue dot 20% to 39%, lightest blue dot 40% to 59%, orange dot 60% to 79%, red dot 80% to 100%

0% denotes that levels are the lowest they have been at the site; 100% denotes that levels are the highest they have been at the site.

More Wastewater Data