Special Report

States Where the Virus Spread Is Slowing (and Where It’s Still Getting Worse)

People in the U.K. began receiving the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine on Tuesday, Dec. 8. They are the first in the world to be inoculated as part of a vaccination program. By the end of the year, as many as 4 million more people will receive the vaccine, including likely at least some Americans. It will still be months, however, before the vast majority of Americans are vaccinated. Here are 17 health questions about COVID-19 answered

At the same time, the virus continues to spread largely out of control in many parts of the county. In the week following the Thanksgiving weekend, more than 150,000 new cases have been reported each day in the United States, including a record 215,000 cases on Dec. 4. Meanwhile, the total number of Americans who have died from the virus is fast approaching the 300,000 mark.

Using data from state and local health departments, 24/7 Wall St. calculated each state’s average of new daily COVID-19 cases for the week ending Dec. 7 and compared it to the average from the previous week to determine the states where the spread of the coronavirus is increasing the fastest. 

The results show that new COVID-19 cases declined in 17 states, including some of those at the heart of the current surge. But that the virus spread in the remaining states is increasing, and dramatically in some. 

Nationwide, the number of new daily cases per 100,000 residents rose by 4, from roughly 50 per 100,000 in the week ending Nov. 30 to nearly 54 per 100,000 in the week ending Dec. 7. In a dozen states, the number of new cases increased by more than 10 per 100,000 residents, and in eight states the rate declined by at least 10 cases.

While daily new cases have been surging nationwide in recent months, the most extreme increases have occurred in the Midwest, notably in the Dakotas. In recent weeks, the spread of new cases has started to slow in many Midwestern states, although even after this slowdown many of these states still lead the country in daily new cases per capita. North Dakota, for example, reported a decline from a nation-worst average of 134 cases per 100,000 residents during the week ending Nov. 30, to 87 new cases per 100,000 during the week ending Dec. 7. The new average is still ninth worst among states.

Click here to see how quickly the virus is spreading in your state.