A new study by Indiana University researchers in collaboration with University of Minnesota researchers examined U.S. trends in COVID-19-associated hospitalizations and mortality rates before and after states reopened their economies in summer 2020. It found that the daily trend in hospitalizations increased following reopening, resulting in over 5,300 new people being hospitalized for COVID-19 each day.
“One basic concern during the pandemic has always been about overwhelming the health care system, which is what we are continuing to see globally with new variants and surges, for instance, recently in India,” said Sumedha Gupta, an associate professor of economics in the IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI and lead author of the study. “It was important for us to determine, as states reopen, would we see an increasing trend of hospitalizations and COVID-related deaths? We found that state reopenings were associated with a statistically significant increasing trend in both COVID-19-related hospitalizations and deaths.”