KANSAS CITY, Mo. — As a new school year begins, the COVID-19 pandemic’s grip on the Kansas City region has worsened compared to this time last year, according to data from the Mid-America Regional Council’s Kansas City COVID-19 Data Hub.
The seven-day rolling average for new infections and hospitalizations through Aug. 11, 2021, are much higher than for Aug. 11, 2020, amid a new wave of cases spurred by the more contagious delta variant.
Compared to last year, the average number of new cases right now (679) is more than 90% higher than the same timeframe in 2020 (357).
Hospitalizations also have surged, from a seven-day average of 92 new hospitalizations per day in 2020 to 154 in 2021 — a more than 67% spike.
That includes a significant increase in acute infections with more than twice as many COVID-19 patients in regional intensive-care units and nearly three times as many COVID-19 patients on ventilators compared to last year.
More than 30% of patients in hospital ICUs right now are COVID-19 patients, compared to less than 9% at the same time last year, which has fueled a sharp reduction in available ICU beds for hospitals in the Kansas City region.