The average number of cases and deaths from COVID-19 are 1.5 times greater this week than they were the week before, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Hospital bed occupancy is currently at over 80%, the highest level since the omicron surge last winter, as COVID hospitalizations have continued to trend upward in recent weeks.

Many medical professionals had warned that after the Thanksgiving holiday, when many people gathered without masks or social distance, there would be an increase in respiratory infections.

In a telebriefing on Monday, Dr. Rochelle P. Walensky, director of the CDC, stated that “in the past week, we’ve started to observe the sad and predicted uptick of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations nationally after the Thanksgiving holiday.”

She continued, “This increase in instances and hospitalizations is especially concerning as we head into the winter months, when more people are congregating indoors with less ventilation, and as we get closer to the Christmas season, when many are reuniting with loved ones from different generations.

Dr. Ashish Jha, the White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator, and Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, advised Americans to get immunized and boosted with a bivalent shot during a press conference on Friday.

“Other vaccinations…give you immunity that endures for years, and occasionally a lifetime. Unfortunately, COVID is an exception. Therefore, we must keep up with that virus and the declining immunity “explained Fauci. “We will ultimately be safe if we do that. You require your updated COVID booster for this reason.”