What We're Reading: India's High COVID-19 Case Averages; Vaccination Rates Across States; ACA Special Enrollment Period

The 7-day average of new COVID-19 cases in India reaches a record high; vaccination rates of US adults differ significantly depending on the region; 1 million people have enrolled during the special ACA open enrollment period.

7-Day India COVID-19 Case Average Reaches New High

According to Reuters, the 7-day average of new COVID-19 cases in India reached a record high of 390,995, with 1 in 3 deaths reported worldwide occurring in the country. Overall, India’s total coronavirus infections stand at 22.99 million with 249,992 total fatalities. A coronavirus variant in India associated with increased transmissibility, called B.1.617, was noted yesterday by the World Health Organization (WHO) to be of global concern. WHO’s chief scientist said that studies are underway in India to examine the variant’s transmissibility, related severity of disease, and how it affects antibodies in vaccinated individuals.

Tracking States With the Highest, Lowest Vaccination Rates

As new cases of COVID-19 continue to decline nationwide, more than half of all US adults (58%) have received at least 1 dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. However, an article by CNN indicated that vaccination rates may differ significantly depending on the US region. Currently, every state in the Northeast has given at least 1 dose to more than 60% of its adult residents, with Vermont reporting the highest vaccination rate nationwide at 74.5%. Conversely, Mississippi has the lowest rate of at least 1 vaccine dose (41.5%), with all states bordering Mississippi also shown to have vaccination rates of less than half of its adult residents.

1 Million Enrolled in Health Coverage During Special ACA Enrollment

Today, President Joe Biden announced that 1 million people have enrolled so far in Affordable Care Act (ACA) coverage during the special open enrollment period created by his administration in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Hill reported that the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan included extra subsidies that went into effect on April 1 that dropped the median ACA plan deductible for new coverage by nearly 90% to $50. Sign-ups on HealthCare.gov will continue to be accepted until August 15.

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