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Expand chart
Data: The COVID Tracking Project, Census Bureau; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

The Midwest and Great Plains regions, parts of which have already struggled with overwhelmed hospitals, continue to lead the U.S. with the densest concentration of coronavirus cases.

The big picture: With winter approaching — and widespread vaccination still several months away — the virus is spreading with dangerous ease.

By the numbers: Over the past week, Indiana, Rhode Island, South Dakota and Utah racked up an average of at least 100 new cases per day for every 100,000 residents.

  • Another 16 states saw 75-100 new cases per capita per day.
  • Heavily rural states have less hospital capacity to care for all those people and will face bigger challenges from vaccines that require ultra-cold storage.

How it works: Every week for several months, Axios has been tracking the change in daily infections in each state.

  • This week, though, we're looking at the total number of cases per capita, instead of the change in the number of cases.
  • The Thanksgiving holiday caused some issues with states' reporting. Everything seems to be back on track now, but we don't want to rely on earlier data that may not paint an accurate picture of the pandemic.

The bottom line: This is simply too much coronavirus.

  • Too many new infections are sending too many seriously ill patients into hospitals. Almost 105,000 people are hospitalized for coronavirus infections right now.
  • These infections also are leading to too many deaths — nearly 13,000 in just the past week.

Go deeper

Rep. Lou Correa tests positive for COVID-19

Lou Correa. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Rep. Lou Correa (D-Calif.) announced on Saturday that he has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Why it matters: Correa is the latest Democratic lawmaker to share his positive test results after last week's deadly Capitol riot. Correa did not shelter in the designated safe zone with his congressional colleagues during the siege, per a spokesperson, instead staying outside to help Capitol Police.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Health: CDC director defends agency's response to pandemic — CDC warns highly transmissible coronavirus variant could become dominant in U.S. in March.
  2. Politics: Biden readies massive shifts in policy for his first days in office.
  3. Vaccine: Fauci: 100 million doses in 100 days is "absolutely" doable.
  4. Economy: Unemployment filings explode again.
  5. Tech: Kids' screen time sees a big increase.
  6. World: WHO team arrives in China to investigate pandemic origins.
Dave Lawler, author of World
2 hours ago - World

Alexey Navalny detained after landing back in Moscow

Navalny and his wife shortly before he was detained. Photo: Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP via Getty

Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny was detained upon his return to Moscow on Sunday, which came five months after he was poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok. He returned despite being warned that he would be arrested.

The latest: Navalny was stopped at a customs checkpoint and led away alone by officers. He appeared to hug his wife goodbye, and his spokesman reports that his lawyer was not allowed to accompany him.