WORCESTER, MA — Worcester added just under 4,000 new coronavirus cases over the past week, pushing the city's pandemic total to near 50,000 cases — although that's a likely undercount due to people either not getting tested or taking at-home rapid tests, according to officials.
Still, city officials on Friday said there are signs the recent omicron surge is on the downswing. The 3,968 cases added since last Friday is lower than the previous week, when Worcester added 4,786 cases over seven days.
Over the past week, there were 328 hospitalized with COVID-19 at either St. Vincent Hospital or UMass Memorial. That's down by about 21 people, although ICU hospitalizations rose by 13 to 73.
Worcester also recorded four new COVID-19 deaths over the past week, up four from Jan. 15. The pandemic total case count hit 49,033 on Friday.
Statewide coronavirus trends are also heading down. Last week, about 90 percent of communities in the state reported rising positive rates, but only 53 percent reported rising rates this week. The state's seven-day positive rate also fell to 15.03 percent, down from the peak of 23.02 percent on Jan. 5.
On the vaccine side, Worcester crossed the 60 percent fully vaccinated threshold this week. Worcester still lags many other cities and towns. Boston, Brockton, Lowell and Lawrence all have higher vaccination rates, although Springfield is still under 60 percent.
Friday was the two-year anniversary of the arrival of coronavirus in the United States. The first case was detected in a man in Everett, Wash., near Seattle on Jan. 21, 2020.