Hospital capacity in every state

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July 24, 2020
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Hospital capacity in every state

Hospital capacity in the U.S. has been dwindling for decades. To examine the current hospital capacity of every U.S. state and Washington D.C., Stacker consulted a federal dataset which compiles estimates of the current burden COVID-19 is placing on hospital systems around the country.

While the nation had nearly 1.5 million hospital beds in 1975, that number fell to just 924,107 by 2018, according to American Hospital Association data analyzed by Statista. Improvements in the efficiency, quality, and availability of outpatient services have helped many patients avoid being admitted to the hospital, creating cost savings and preserving hospital beds for people with more complex health care needs. What’s more, inpatient stays have grown shorter; the average amount of time a patient spent at the hospital was 6.1 days in 2015, compared with 11.4 days in 1975—further reducing the need for beds.

But how low can the number of beds get before the availability of care is seriously compromised? We may be long past that point. Since at least 2003, experts have been warning that hospital capacity “is being stretched to its limits,” and at no point in recent history has this become more apparent than the coronavirus pandemic. When COVID-19 hit the U.S., modeling systems showed that the health care system would be overwhelmed—a prediction that came true in places like New York, Washington, Texas, and other states. The availability of hospital beds continues to be used as a critical metric in determining how quickly states loosen coronavirus-related restrictions—or potentially go back into shutdown mode.

The dataset we mined for this story was run by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) until data-reporting protocols for hospitals around the country changed in mid-July, causing hospitals to report to the Department for Health & Human Services (HHS) instead. Although the new HHS Protect Hospital Capacity dataset was updated on July 23, this recent data update has raised questions about data quality: Rhode Island, for example, is reported to have a hospital capacity figure over 100%. As a result, we refer to hospital capacity figures verified by the CDC as of July 14. We have also supplemented these data with current hospitalization and cumulative COVID-19 counts from the COVID Tracking Project at The Atlantic, a volunteer effort that compiles and standardizes COVID-19 data from state public health departments. COVID Tracking Project data are up to date as of July 23.

Does your state have enough hospital beds for the next COVID-19 surge? Click through to see how hospital capacity varies across the U.S.

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Mx. Granger // Wikimedia Commons

Alabama

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 76.8% occupied (9,919 beds, #6 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 84.0% occupied (1,638 beds, #2 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 1,547 patients hospitalized (31.8 per 100,000 people, #8 highest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 74,212 cases (1,526 per 100,000 people, #11 highest)
--- 1,397 deaths (28.7 per 100k, #20 highest)
--- 619,527 tests (12,735 per 100k, #20 lowest)
--- 8,995 hospitalizations (184.9 per 100k)

A spike in coronavirus infections in Alabama that began on June 28 not only cut into the state’s hospital capacity but has also taken a toll on health care workers, according to Paul Gattis and Ramsey Archibald of AL.com. The stress and anxiety of caring for high numbers of patients in the ICU and seeing people die in the hospital is putting medical staff at risk of mental health problems and exhaustion.

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Alaska

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 46.7% occupied (760 beds, #4 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 49.0% occupied (88 beds, #9 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 36 patients hospitalized (4.9 per 100,000 people, #11 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 2,684 cases (363 per 100,000 people, #6 lowest)
--- 19 deaths (2.6 per 100k, #2 lowest)
--- 189,509 tests (25,661 per 100k, #2 highest)

Hospitalizations related to COVID-19 in Alaska hit a new high in the first full week of July. There were 16 Alaskans sick enough to be hospitalized on July 6, whereas that rate was in the single digits on every other day during the pandemic, according to Annie Berman and Zaz Hollander of Anchorage Daily News.

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Arizona

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 77.0% occupied (10,320 beds, #5 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 76.7% occupied (1,880 beds, #7 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 2,966 patients hospitalized (42.7 per 100,000 people, #2 highest among all states)
--- 851 patients in the ICU (12.3 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 152,944 cases (2,202 per 100,000 people, #1 highest)
--- 3,063 deaths (44.1 per 100k, #14 highest)
--- 822,713 tests (11,843 per 100k, #17 lowest)
--- 7,236 hospitalizations (104.2 per 100k)

Coronavirus infections have been affecting the capacity of the morgues at some Arizona hospitals. The state requested that hospitals move forward with emergency plans, such as ordering refrigerated storage for bodies of deceased patients.

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Arkansas

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 63.8% occupied (4,772 beds, #23 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 70.2% occupied (772 beds, #14 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 480 patients hospitalized (16.0 per 100,000 people, #12 highest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 36,259 cases (1,212 per 100,000 people, #22 highest)
--- 386 deaths (12.9 per 100k, #14 lowest)
--- 446,480 tests (14,929 per 100k, #20 highest)
--- 2,361 hospitalizations (78.9 per 100k)

When COVID-19 cases in Arkansas first surpassed 1,000 on July 11, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Chancellor Dr. Cam Patterson warned that some hospitals were “on the edge” of being unable to manage coronavirus patients. Two days later, Gov. Asa Hutchinson said that the state’s hospital capacity was still “adequate.”

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California

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 66.6% occupied (46,383 beds, #21 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 71.2% occupied (7,095 beds, #10 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 8,820 patients hospitalized (22.5 per 100,000 people, #10 highest among all states)
--- 2,196 patients in the ICU (5.6 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 425,616 cases (1,087 per 100,000 people, #24 highest)
--- 8,027 deaths (20.5 per 100k, #24 lowest)
--- 6,778,304 tests (17,314 per 100k, #12 highest)

Hospital wards were filling up after a surge of new coronavirus infections hit California, according to a July 13 report from the Los Angeles Times. Some health care workers in the state say they are growing physically and emotionally exhausted from caring for so many patients at the same time.

 

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Colorado

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 53.3% occupied (6,967 beds, #9 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 57.8% occupied (1,167 beds, #18 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 351 patients hospitalized (6.3 per 100,000 people, #20 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 41,698 cases (754 per 100,000 people, #16 lowest)
--- 1,643 deaths (29.7 per 100k, #18 highest)
--- 465,411 tests (8,414 per 100k, #3 lowest)
--- 6,133 hospitalizations (110.9 per 100k)

Dr. Leon Kelly, deputy medical director at El Paso County Public Health in Colorado, warned on July 14 that hospitals in the Colorado Springs area will soon reach capacity if COVID-19 cases continue to rise. He said that an 80-90% mask compliance rate would be required to avoid increased rates of infection.

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Connecticut

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 70.8% occupied (6,225 beds, #12 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 48.9% occupied (756 beds, #8 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 72 patients hospitalized (2.0 per 100,000 people, #6 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 48,232 cases (1,347 per 100,000 people, #15 highest)
--- 4,410 deaths (123.1 per 100k, #4 highest)
--- 687,888 tests (19,207 per 100k, #8 highest)
--- 10,712 hospitalizations (299.1 per 100k)

Hospitals in Connecticut have seen a rise in demand for emergency services and routine care since the state has started reopening. But despite the increased business, the postponement of elective services and months of added expenses have created sizable financial losses for hospitals. Connecticut hospitals are now asking the state for $450 million in aid.

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Delaware

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 68.9% occupied (1,906 beds, #17 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 66.9% occupied (227 beds, #20 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 56 patients hospitalized (5.9 per 100,000 people, #18 lowest among all states)
--- 7 patients in the ICU (0.7 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 13,924 cases (1,466 per 100,000 people, #13 highest)
--- 529 deaths (55.7 per 100k, #11 highest)
--- 162,351 tests (17,099 per 100k, #13 highest)

Data modeling from the nonprofit organization CovidActNow indicated on July 9 that the COVID-19 cases in Delaware were growing at a rate that was likely to overload hospitals, per reporting from the Delaware State News. However, it also showed that hospitals were not likely to become overwhelmed within the next 30 days if current interventions continued.

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Florida

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 78.8% occupied (45,353 beds, #3 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 76.5% occupied (7,219 beds, #8 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 9,422 patients hospitalized (45.7 per 100,000 people, #1 highest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 389,868 cases (1,893 per 100,000 people, #5 highest)
--- 5,632 deaths (27.3 per 100k, #23 highest)
--- 3,213,568 tests (15,601 per 100k, #18 highest)
--- 22,991 hospitalizations (111.6 per 100k)

A record-high growth of coronavirus cases in Florida during the first two weeks of July has left hospitals in the southern part of the state with shortages of testing supplies, medicine, equipment, and staff. Some hospitals have been offering hazard pay and other financial incentives to encourage staff to agree to work additional shifts or stay on the clock for extra hours.

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Georgia

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 74.8% occupied (17,001 beds, #9 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 80.5% occupied (2,798 beds, #4 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 3,157 patients hospitalized (30.7 per 100,000 people, #9 highest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 156,588 cases (1,521 per 100,000 people, #12 highest)
--- 3,360 deaths (32.6 per 100k, #16 highest)
--- 1,336,938 tests (12,983 per 100k, #22 lowest)
--- 16,353 hospitalizations (158.8 per 100k)

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp announced on July 10 that the state would reopen a temporary hospital at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta to increase capacity for treating COVID-19 patients. The field hospital, which was open in April and closed in May, will provide 200 additional beds.

 

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Hawaii

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 66.4% occupied (1,500 beds, #23 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 56.6% occupied (253 beds, #16 lowest)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 1,435 cases (101 per 100,000 people, #1 lowest)
--- 25 deaths (1.8 per 100k, #1 lowest)
--- 108,813 tests (7,652 per 100k, #1 lowest)
--- 154 hospitalizations (10.8 per 100k)

A construction project for a new building at Hawaii State Hospital was temporarily shut down after health officials discovered nine COVID-19 cases that stemmed from the site, according to a July 9 article from Mahealani Richardson of Hawaii News Now. The $160 million facility is aimed at increasing the capacity of the hospital.

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Idaho

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 62.6% occupied (1,878 beds, #21 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 64.3% occupied (287 beds, #23 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 188 patients hospitalized (11.1 per 100,000 people, #21 highest among all states)
--- 46 patients in the ICU (2.7 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 16,322 cases (967 per 100,000 people, #26 lowest)
--- 135 deaths (8.0 per 100k, #7 lowest)
--- 156,826 tests (9,292 per 100k, #7 lowest)
--- 674 hospitalizations (39.9 per 100k)

Despite a rise in cases, Idaho hospitals said they still had plenty of capacity as of July 10. However, some worry that a rise in cases over the following weeks could overwhelm health care facilities and lead to increased crowding and the need to find other hospitals that will accept transfer patients.

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Illinois

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 59.2% occupied (19,017 beds, #14 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 54.3% occupied (3,066 beds, #14 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 1,473 patients hospitalized (11.5 per 100,000 people, #20 highest among all states)
--- 309 patients in the ICU (2.4 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 168,100 cases (1,311 per 100,000 people, #17 highest)
--- 7,560 deaths (59.0 per 100k, #9 highest)
--- 2,389,368 tests (18,636 per 100k, #10 highest)

With hospital capacity an ongoing concern during the pandemic, some Illinois legislators began calling on medical centers to be more transparent about the availability of beds in mid-July, according to Kristen Schorsch of WBEZ. Lawmakers would like the state to create a system to coordinate the transfer of COVID-19 patients between various facilities.

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Indiana

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 61.0% occupied (8,661 beds, #17 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 49.9% occupied (1,494 beds, #10 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 869 patients hospitalized (13.1 per 100,000 people, #17 highest among all states)
--- 327 patients in the ICU (4.9 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 59,602 cases (898 per 100,000 people, #23 lowest)
--- 2,880 deaths (43.4 per 100k, #15 highest)
--- 666,283 tests (10,038 per 100k, #9 lowest)
--- 8,066 hospitalizations (121.5 per 100k)

Indiana hospitals say that the significant costs of preparing for the pandemic (including doubling their ventilators and capacity in their intensive care units) have created severe financial challenges, according to The Times. The problem was compounded by a 26% drop in inpatient volume in March and April.

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Iowa

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 49.9% occupied (4,472 beds, #7 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 47.5% occupied (550 beds, #7 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 232 patients hospitalized (7.4 per 100,000 people, #23 lowest among all states)
--- 73 patients in the ICU (2.3 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 40,634 cases (1,297 per 100,000 people, #19 highest)
--- 818 deaths (26.1 per 100k, #25 highest)
--- 436,286 tests (13,928 per 100k, #24 highest)

Hospital officials in the Quad-Cities region, which in Iowa includes Davenport and Bettendorf, warned that their intensive care units “were essentially full” on July 14, according to Anthony Watt of the Quad-City Times. They say that an outbreak in local food processing plants or nursing homes could quickly overload health care facilities.

 

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Kansas

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 50.0% occupied (4,913 beds, #8 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 53.2% occupied (899 beds, #12 lowest)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 24,104 cases (829 per 100,000 people, #18 lowest)
--- 308 deaths (10.6 per 100k, #11 lowest)
--- 268,686 tests (9,237 per 100k, #6 lowest)
--- 1,545 hospitalizations (53.1 per 100k)

Brandon Whipple, Mayor of Wichita, Kansas, warned on July 14 that hospitals in the city could hit capacity later this month if coronavirus infection rates continued to surge, according to the Associated Press. Hospitals had already begun converting treatment rooms into intensive care units for COVID-19 patients, which limits the capacity for people in need of other types of care.

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Kentucky

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 59.7% occupied (7,499 beds, #15 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 58.1% occupied (904 beds, #19 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 581 patients hospitalized (13.1 per 100,000 people, #18 highest among all states)
--- 135 patients in the ICU (3.0 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 25,147 cases (566 per 100,000 people, #10 lowest)
--- 684 deaths (15.4 per 100k, #18 lowest)
--- 524,795 tests (11,819 per 100k, #16 lowest)
--- 2,921 hospitalizations (65.8 per 100k)

Despite a surge in new COVID-19 cases, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said on July 14 that hospitals in the state had enough capacity to care for patients. He did warn that things could change quickly and that people needed to take precautions, like wearing a mask, to prevent additional infections.

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Louisiana

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 65.7% occupied (8,382 beds, #25 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 71.0% occupied (1,437 beds, #11 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 1,585 patients hospitalized (34.0 per 100,000 people, #7 highest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 101,650 cases (2,180 per 100,000 people, #2 highest)
--- 3,686 deaths (79.0 per 100k, #7 highest)
--- 1,174,868 tests (25,192 per 100k, #3 highest)

Hospitals in Louisiana were struggling to continue operating at full capacity amid a new surge in coronavirus cases. Doctors say that there aren’t enough employees to meet demand after many have gotten sick and that they may need to transfer patients to faraway facilities if they don’t have a place to care for them locally.

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Maine

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 70.9% occupied (1,928 beds, #11 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 69.1% occupied (262 beds, #15 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 12 patients hospitalized (0.9 per 100,000 people, #3 lowest among all states)
--- 8 patients in the ICU (0.6 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 3,737 cases (280 per 100,000 people, #4 lowest)
--- 118 deaths (8.9 per 100k, #9 lowest)
--- 147,675 tests (11,080 per 100k, #12 lowest)
--- 378 hospitalizations (28.4 per 100k)

The federal government has awarded Maine hospitals more than $1 million to help them beef up capacity, according to a July 6 report from WABI 5. Hospitals across the state will use the funding to improve their preparedness programs through additional staff training and purchasing supplies and equipment.

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Maryland

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 76.2% occupied (6,338 beds, #7 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 58.7% occupied (1,759 beds, #21 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 528 patients hospitalized (8.8 per 100,000 people, #24 highest among all states)
--- 133 patients in the ICU (2.2 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 80,836 cases (1,346 per 100,000 people, #16 highest)
--- 3,409 deaths (56.8 per 100k, #10 highest)
--- 789,041 tests (13,143 per 100k, #24 lowest)
--- 12,037 hospitalizations (200.5 per 100k)

July 14 marked the greatest daily increase in hospitalization rates in Maryland in seven weeks. Hospitals had been watching the rates of infections and preparing for a potential increase in COVID-19 cases as a result of summer beach trips.

 

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Massachusetts

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 78.7% occupied (9,827 beds, #4 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 61.7% occupied (681 beds, #25 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 532 patients hospitalized (7.8 per 100,000 people, #25 lowest among all states)
--- 63 patients in the ICU (0.9 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 114,320 cases (1,674 per 100,000 people, #8 highest)
--- 8,468 deaths (124.0 per 100k, #3 highest)
--- 1,070,062 tests (15,667 per 100k, #17 highest)
--- 11,761 hospitalizations (172.2 per 100k)

While medical workers in some states worry about the availability of beds at hospitals, those in Massachusetts are concerned about capacity in another area: staff shuttle buses. In late June, two large groups of nurses sad crowded shuttle buses that take staff to work are putting nurses and patients at a higher risk of viral exposure. They’d like management to mandate social distancing and cut capacity to 50% on buses.

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Michigan

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 70.1% occupied (15,608 beds, #15 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 65.1% occupied (2,160 beds, #21 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 680 patients hospitalized (6.8 per 100,000 people, #22 lowest among all states)
--- 210 patients in the ICU (2.1 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 84,431 cases (848 per 100,000 people, #19 lowest)
--- 6,395 deaths (64.2 per 100k, #8 highest)
--- 1,586,724 tests (15,935 per 100k, #16 highest)

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services said that getting kids caught up on vaccinations is key to protecting hospital capacity during the coronavirus crisis. Michigan Care Improvement Registry data shows that the percentage of children who are up-to-date on their vaccines has fallen as of May 2020.

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Minnesota

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 60.6% occupied (7,445 beds, #16 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 62.8% occupied (936 beds, #24 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 282 patients hospitalized (5.1 per 100,000 people, #12 lowest among all states)
--- 107 patients in the ICU (1.9 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 48,721 cases (881 per 100,000 people, #22 lowest)
--- 1,601 deaths (29.0 per 100k, #19 highest)
--- 905,315 tests (16,379 per 100k, #14 highest)
--- 4,818 hospitalizations (87.2 per 100k)

Minnesota health care facilities had plenty of capacity due to a record-low drop in active hospitalizations as of July 10. Most of the state’s coronavirus cases in mid-July were located in the suburbs around Minneapolis and St. Paul.

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Mississippi

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 63.4% occupied (4,456 beds, #22 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 62.7% occupied (670 beds, #25 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 1,207 patients hospitalized (40.4 per 100,000 people, #3 highest among all states)
--- 293 patients in the ICU (9.8 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 48,053 cases (1,608 per 100,000 people, #9 highest)
--- 1,436 deaths (48.0 per 100k, #13 highest)
--- 404,012 tests (13,518 per 100k, #25 lowest)
--- 3,878 hospitalizations (129.8 per 100k)

The five largest hospitals in Mississippi ran out of intensive care units for new patients the week of July 9. Only 5% or fewer of the beds at four other hospitals were available at that time.

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Missouri

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 62.3% occupied (11,611 beds, #19 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 64.6% occupied (1,761 beds, #22 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 875 patients hospitalized (14.4 per 100,000 people, #15 highest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 37,700 cases (619 per 100,000 people, #11 lowest)
--- 1,179 deaths (19.4 per 100k, #22 lowest)
--- 603,284 tests (9,906 per 100k, #8 lowest)

Missouri officials announced on July 14 that hospital capacity was “stable” amid a rise in COVID-19 cases. However, the situation could change if cases spike and hospitals schedule additional elective surgeries.

 

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Montana

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 55.0% occupied (1,583 beds, #10 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 54.2% occupied (140 beds, #13 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 54 patients hospitalized (5.2 per 100,000 people, #13 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 2,910 cases (279 per 100,000 people, #3 lowest)
--- 43 deaths (4.1 per 100k, #3 lowest)
--- 146,218 tests (14,036 per 100k, #23 highest)
--- 183 hospitalizations (17.6 per 100k)

The largest hospitals in Montana announced in early July that they boosted capacity in preparation for a potential spike in coronavirus cases, according to Holly Michels of the Independent Record. Supply chain challenges continue to make it difficult for the facilities to stock up on personal protective equipment, though.

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Nebraska

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 62.6% occupied (3,248 beds, #20 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 55.2% occupied (593 beds, #15 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 125 patients hospitalized (6.6 per 100,000 people, #21 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 23,486 cases (1,233 per 100,000 people, #21 highest)
--- 311 deaths (16.3 per 100k, #20 lowest)
--- 245,573 tests (12,893 per 100k, #21 lowest)
--- 1,522 hospitalizations (79.9 per 100k)

Nebraska hospitalizations hit their lowest rate since mid-April on July 12. The declining hospitalizations give health care facilities more capacity to treat new patients.

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Nevada

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 81.1% occupied (5,976 beds, #2 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 81.3% occupied (1,055 beds, #3 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 1,136 patients hospitalized (38.9 per 100,000 people, #5 highest among all states)
--- 306 patients in the ICU (10.5 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 39,919 cases (1,366 per 100,000 people, #14 highest)
--- 709 deaths (24.3 per 100k, #25 lowest)
--- 414,136 tests (14,169 per 100k, #22 highest)

Amid a rise in coronavirus infections, at least one hospital in Nevada has postponed some elective procedures to preserve capacity for COVID-19 patients, according to a July 9 article from Mary Hynes of the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Elective surgeries in the state were initially postponed in mid-March but were allowed to resume in May once COVID-19 cases had temporarily fallen.

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New Hampshire

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 70.5% occupied (2,303 beds, #14 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 70.9% occupied (290 beds, #12 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 24 patients hospitalized (1.8 per 100,000 people, #4 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 6,295 cases (469 per 100,000 people, #9 lowest)
--- 402 deaths (29.9 per 100k, #17 highest)
--- 146,879 tests (10,932 per 100k, #11 lowest)
--- 680 hospitalizations (50.6 per 100k)

Hospital operations and staffing have been returning to normal in New Hampshire as of July 12. However, some hospitals (including those in Manchester and Nashua) say they are now desperate for financial relief after losing tens of millions of dollars during the pandemic.

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Brian Ach // Shutterstock

New Jersey

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 70.0% occupied (10,253 beds, #16 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 43.0% occupied (1,114 beds, #4 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 869 patients hospitalized (9.8 per 100,000 people, #22 highest among all states)
--- 152 patients in the ICU (1.7 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 177,887 cases (2,003 per 100,000 people, #4 highest)
--- 15,730 deaths (177.1 per 100k, #1 highest)
--- 1,859,638 tests (20,938 per 100k, #6 highest)
--- 21,184 hospitalizations (238.5 per 100k)

Hospitals in New Jersey were trying to restock their supplies of coronavirus tests and personal protective equipment in mid-July in preparation for a potential second surge. They are facing obstacles in hitting the goal of acquiring a 90-day stock, though, including issues with the supply chain, increased demand for these supplies from other parts of the country, and no coordination from the federal government.

 

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New Mexico

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 66.7% occupied (2,396 beds, #20 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 60.9% occupied (426 beds, #23 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 178 patients hospitalized (8.5 per 100,000 people, #25 highest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 17,828 cases (852 per 100,000 people, #20 lowest)
--- 591 deaths (28.2 per 100k, #21 highest)
--- 489,334 tests (23,386 per 100k, #5 highest)
--- 2,470 hospitalizations (118.0 per 100k)

As hospitals in New Mexico approach or hit capacity, they may no longer be able to continue accepting transfers of COVID-19 patients from neighboring states, according to a July 17 article from the Associated Press. The state “has fewer hospital beds per capita than many other states,” according to Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.

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Leonard Zhukovsky

New York

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 67.4% occupied (31,321 beds, #19 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 50.2% occupied (3,769 beds, #11 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 706 patients hospitalized (3.6 per 100,000 people, #9 lowest among all states)
--- 160 patients in the ICU (0.8 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 409,697 cases (2,088 per 100,000 people, #3 highest)
--- 25,081 deaths (127.8 per 100k, #2 highest)
--- 5,368,338 tests (27,364 per 100k, #1 highest)
--- 89,995 hospitalizations (458.7 per 100k)

New York City nearly tripled its hospital capacity in the beginning stages of the pandemic. But despite the increased capacity, some hospitals still experienced “crushing surges,” partially because ambulances typically took patients to the closest facility, not the one with the most available beds, according to reporting from the New York Times.

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North Carolina

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 66.4% occupied (13,963 beds, #24 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 68.8% occupied (1,692 beds, #16 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 1,188 patients hospitalized (11.7 per 100,000 people, #19 highest among all states)
--- 360 patients in the ICU (3.5 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 106,893 cases (1,053 per 100,000 people, #25 highest)
--- 1,726 deaths (17.0 per 100k, #21 lowest)
--- 1,523,675 tests (15,003 per 100k, #19 highest)

Hospital capacity rates in North Carolina were similar to pre-pandemic times on July 17, according to Claire Donnelly of WFAE. Hospitals around Charlotte have plans in place that would increase their bed counts if hospitalizations keep rising.

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North Dakota

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 44.6% occupied (1,389 beds, #2 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 28.3% occupied (154 beds, #2 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 57 patients hospitalized (7.6 per 100,000 people, #24 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 5,493 cases (730 per 100,000 people, #15 lowest)
--- 88 deaths (11.7 per 100k, #12 lowest)
--- 140,816 tests (18,721 per 100k, #9 highest)
--- 322 hospitalizations (42.8 per 100k)

In late June, North Dakota dismantled field hospitals it had previously set up to increase capacity for a potential coronavirus surge, according to the Times Union. The hospitals, which had been located in Bismarck and Fargo, contained hundreds of cots.

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Eric Glenn

Ohio

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 59.2% occupied (18,390 beds, #13 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 42.4% occupied (3,006 beds, #3 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 1,105 patients hospitalized (9.5 per 100,000 people, #23 highest among all states)
--- 365 patients in the ICU (3.1 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 80,186 cases (689 per 100,000 people, #13 lowest)
--- 3,256 deaths (28.0 per 100k, #22 highest)
--- 1,245,026 tests (10,694 per 100k, #10 lowest)
--- 9,968 hospitalizations (85.6 per 100k)

Hospitals around Cleveland, Ohio, have not needed to boost capacity during the pandemic, as the forecasted surge in coronavirus cases has not yet manifested, according to a July 17 article from Julie Washington of Cleveland.com. Cleveland Clinic is taking down a temporary surge hospital it had created in an education space to treat COVID-19 patients.

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4kclips // Shutterstock

Oklahoma

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 64.4% occupied (6,272 beds, #24 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 68.0% occupied (855 beds, #17 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 607 patients hospitalized (15.5 per 100,000 people, #13 highest among all states)
--- 255 patients in the ICU (6.5 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 27,969 cases (714 per 100,000 people, #14 lowest)
--- 477 deaths (12.2 per 100k, #13 lowest)
--- 513,175 tests (13,097 per 100k, #23 lowest)
--- 2,596 hospitalizations (66.3 per 100k)

Oklahoma’s state government is finalizing a new plan to prepare hospitals for a surge in patients. The plan includes doubling emergency bed capacity and equipment used to treat COVID-19 patients, according to July 16 reporting from News on 6.

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M. O. Stevens // Shutterstock

Oregon

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 61.8% occupied (4,756 beds, #18 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 57.7% occupied (799 beds, #17 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 225 patients hospitalized (5.5 per 100,000 people, #15 lowest among all states)
--- 52 patients in the ICU (1.3 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 15,713 cases (385 per 100,000 people, #7 lowest)
--- 273 deaths (6.7 per 100k, #6 lowest)
--- 358,491 tests (8,782 per 100k, #5 lowest)
--- 1,465 hospitalizations (35.9 per 100k)

Modeling from the Oregon Health Authority predicted as of July 13 that hospitals around Portland could reach their capacity within a month if infections continue to rise at the current rate. The data also shows that hospitals around the state could be overloaded within the next three months.

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Amy Lutz // Shutterstock

Pennsylvania

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 66.5% occupied (18,708 beds, #22 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 61.5% occupied (2,850 beds, #24 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 736 patients hospitalized (5.8 per 100,000 people, #16 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 104,358 cases (816 per 100,000 people, #17 lowest)
--- 7,079 deaths (55.3 per 100k, #12 highest)
--- 1,085,617 tests (8,487 per 100k, #4 lowest)

In an effort to stop a rise in coronavirus cases and protect hospital capacity, Pennsylvania implemented new restrictions on bars, restaurants, and gatherings on July 15. The limits are mainly aimed at indoor spaces, where the virus can be more easily spread.

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Rhode Island

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 86.0% occupied (1,951 beds, #1 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 85.2% occupied (178 beds, #1 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 67 patients hospitalized (6.3 per 100,000 people, #19 lowest among all states)
--- 7 patients in the ICU (0.7 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 18,148 cases (1,718 per 100,000 people, #6 highest)
--- 1,001 deaths (94.7 per 100k, #5 highest)
--- 189,339 tests (17,919 per 100k, #11 highest)
--- 2,137 hospitalizations (202.3 per 100k)

Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo allowed visitation at hospitals to resume on July 8. Facilities may stop allowing visitors if a coronavirus outbreak occurs, though.

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Chris Perello // Shutterstock

South Carolina

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 75.5% occupied (8,106 beds, #8 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 78.1% occupied (1,241 beds, #5 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 1,723 patients hospitalized (34.8 per 100,000 people, #6 highest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 76,606 cases (1,546 per 100,000 people, #10 highest)
--- 1,334 deaths (26.9 per 100k, #24 highest)
--- 618,474 tests (12,479 per 100k, #19 lowest)
--- 4,498 hospitalizations (90.8 per 100k)

South Carolina hospitals were suffering from a shortage of both testing supplies and staff as of July 14, limiting their ability to fight the pandemic. Inland hospitals in the state were also running low on the beds they’d need to accept transfers of patients from Myrtle Beach and other hotspots.

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VILevi // Shutterstock

South Dakota

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 31.6% occupied (510 beds, #0 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 0.0% occupied ( beds, #1 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 50 patients hospitalized (5.8 per 100,000 people, #17 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 8,143 cases (942 per 100,000 people, #24 lowest)
--- 121 deaths (14.0 per 100k, #16 lowest)
--- 102,536 tests (11,864 per 100k, #18 lowest)
--- 792 hospitalizations (91.6 per 100k)

Inadequate data systems led to a series of incorrect predictions on hospital capacity needs in South Dakota early in the pandemic. Originally, it was forecasted that state hospitals would need 5,000 beds for COVID-19 patients at the expected peak in mid-June, but only 93 people ended up hospitalized at that time.

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sfam_photo // Shutterstock

Tennessee

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 68.4% occupied (13,681 beds, #18 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 74.6% occupied (2,678 beds, #9 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 1,465 patients hospitalized (22.0 per 100,000 people, #11 highest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 86,987 cases (1,308 per 100,000 people, #18 highest)
--- 925 deaths (13.9 per 100k, #15 lowest)
--- 1,295,985 tests (19,485 per 100k, #7 highest)
--- 4,016 hospitalizations (60.4 per 100k)

Hospital capacity hit a “cautionary” level in East Tennessee for the first time during the pandemic on July 8. Increasing hospitalization rates of COVID-19 patients in the region could test the local health care system.

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Pixabay

Texas

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 70.6% occupied (46,531 beds, #13 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 77.9% occupied (8,752 beds, #6 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 10,893 patients hospitalized (39.1 per 100,000 people, #4 highest among all states)
--- 3,329 patients in the ICU (11.9 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 361,125 cases (1,295 per 100,000 people, #20 highest)
--- 4,521 deaths (16.2 per 100k, #19 lowest)
--- 3,164,656 tests (11,349 per 100k, #13 lowest)

Hospitals in major cities around Texas, including those in Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio, were approaching full capacity on July 16 amid a surge in new COVID-19 patients. San Antonio mayor Ron Nirenberg said on July 13 that availability of hospital beds, ventilators, and intensive care units in his city were down to the single digits.

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NicholasGeraldinePhotos // Shutterstock

Utah

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 48.8% occupied (2,196 beds, #5 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 58.2% occupied (410 beds, #20 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 249 patients hospitalized (8.2 per 100,000 people, #26 lowest among all states)
--- 98 patients in the ICU (3.2 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 36,099 cases (1,185 per 100,000 people, #23 highest)
--- 267 deaths (8.8 per 100k, #8 lowest)
--- 485,422 tests (15,940 per 100k, #15 highest)
--- 2,150 hospitalizations (70.6 per 100k)

Mounting pressure on hospital capacity in Utah has leaders of health care facilities calling for a mask mandate. Dr. Arlen Jarrett, the chief medical officer of Steward Health Care, warned that the state was “headed for a disaster.”

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Bob LoCicero // Shutterstock

Vermont

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 65.4% occupied (880 beds, #25 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 60.2% occupied (104 beds, #22 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 12 patients hospitalized (1.9 per 100,000 people, #5 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 1,377 cases (220 per 100,000 people, #2 lowest)
--- 56 deaths (9.0 per 100k, #10 lowest)
--- 86,582 tests (13,854 per 100k, #25 highest)

The University of Vermont Health Network, a large health care network in Vermont, furloughed employees and slashed doctors’ benefits in an attempt to offset financial losses related to COVID-19, according to Katie Jickling of VTDigger. The UVM Medical Center, a hospital in the network, continued “to operate at about 80% capacity,” as of June 23.

 

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create jobs 51 // Shutterstock

Virginia

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 59.2% occupied (12,098 beds, #12 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 70.5% occupied (1,926 beds, #13 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 1,218 patients hospitalized (14.5 per 100,000 people, #14 highest among all states)
--- 257 patients in the ICU (3.1 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 81,237 cases (966 per 100,000 people, #25 lowest)
--- 2,054 deaths (24.4 per 100k, #26 lowest)
--- 972,617 tests (11,560 per 100k, #14 lowest)
--- 11,697 hospitalizations (139.0 per 100k)

Hospitals in Virginia have been meeting the governor’s standards for capacity and protective equipment supplies for longer than a month as of July 17. Virginia has also ramped up coronavirus screening to between 8,000 and 15,000 tests per day.

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Washington

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 55.5% occupied (7,921 beds, #11 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 67.8% occupied (1,188 beds, #18 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 385 patients hospitalized (5.3 per 100,000 people, #14 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 49,247 cases (675 per 100,000 people, #12 lowest)
--- 1,468 deaths (20.1 per 100k, #23 lowest)
--- 855,152 tests (11,724 per 100k, #15 lowest)
--- 5,211 hospitalizations (71.4 per 100k)

A complete lack of hospital capacity in one Washington county prompted Gov. Jay Inslee to mandate face masks for everyone in mid-June. Yakima Health District announced on June 19 that it had “no intensive care or non-intensive care beds available.”

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Washington D.C.

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 49.3% occupied (1,185 beds, #6 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 46.7% occupied (244 beds, #6 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 91 patients hospitalized (13.3 per 100,000 people, #16 highest among all states)
--- 22 patients in the ICU (3.2 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 11,571 cases (1,690 per 100,000 people, #7 highest)
--- 581 deaths (84.9 per 100k, #6 highest)
--- 162,021 tests (23,670 per 100k, #4 highest)

The D.C. Council struck a $375 million deal to build a new hospital in the southeast part of Washington D.C.. The hospital, which would have the capacity for up to 196 beds, is positioned to help ease health inequities in the area.

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West Virginia

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 72.8% occupied (4,192 beds, #10 highest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 67.7% occupied (523 beds, #19 highest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 88 patients hospitalized (4.8 per 100,000 people, #10 lowest among all states)
--- 38 patients in the ICU (2.1 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 5,550 cases (303 per 100,000 people, #5 lowest)
--- 103 deaths (5.6 per 100k, #5 lowest)
--- 251,072 tests (13,727 per 100k, #26 lowest)

Health officials in West Virginia warned on July 9 that hospitals could become overwhelmed if coronavirus infections continue to rise. They urged people to wear masks in public.

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Aaron of L.A. Photography // Shutterstock

Wisconsin

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 46.3% occupied (6,168 beds, #3 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 45.3% occupied (768 beds, #5 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 187 patients hospitalized (3.2 per 100,000 people, #8 lowest among all states)
--- 51 patients in the ICU (0.9 per 100k)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 49,669 cases (860 per 100,000 people, #21 lowest)
--- 885 deaths (15.3 per 100k, #17 lowest)
--- 828,593 tests (14,340 per 100k, #21 highest)
--- 4,273 hospitalizations (73.9 per 100k)

A recent surge of coronavirus infections among young adults in Wisconsin has state heath officials worried about a potential strain on hospitals. The problem could be compounded in the coming months if hospitals need to battle both COVID-19 and the flu at the same time.

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Wyoming

- Hospital capacity as of July 14:
--- Inpatient beds: 34.0% occupied (426 beds, #1 lowest of all states)
--- ICU beds: 0.0% occupied ( beds, #1 lowest)
- Current COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 23:
--- 15 patients hospitalized (2.6 per 100,000 people, #7 lowest among all states)
- Total state COVID-19 counts as of July 23:
--- 2,346 cases (403 per 100,000 people, #8 lowest)
--- 25 deaths (4.3 per 100k, #4 lowest)
--- 48,169 tests (8,279 per 100k, #2 lowest)
--- 153 hospitalizations (26.3 per 100k)

Wyoming maintained a stable hospital capacity amid increasing rates of COVID-19 infections in early July. Gov. Mark Gordon called on people to keep their masks on in public spaces to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus.

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