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Kinsa Predicts COVID-19 Will Spread More

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What You Need to Know

  • A Bluetooth-connected temperature company sees COVID-19 rising in parts of U.S.
  • Wide swaths in Midwest and East Coast see rises in people's temperature readings.
  • About 30% of cases are from the U.K. variant of the virus.

A San Francisco-based startup that sells Bluetooth-connected thermometers says people’s temperatures are starting to rise in much of the Upper Midwest and Southeast.

Kinsa Inc. has updated its COVID-19 forecast map to show that the virus behind the pandemic may spread more rapidly in coming weeks.

A few weeks ago, most of the Kinsa forecast map was cream-colored, indicating that, based on thermometer readings and data from the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University, the third major U.S. wave of cases was shrinking.

Now, the map shows squares of orange, indicating that COVID-19 is likely to resume spreading, in much of the Upper Midwest, from North Dakota down to Kansas, and east to Minnesota and Illinois.

Two other, orange-specked regions stretch from New York state to Pennsylvania, and from South Carolina to Mississippi.

In some counties, such as Bent County, Colorado, Kinsa sees a risk that COVID-19 could soon begin spreading rapidly, even though the risk of catch COVID-19 in those counties today is low.

Kinsa analysts said in a commentary posted Friday that, although the the hospitalization rate and the mortality rate still were dropping, the rate of decrease in the number of new cases continued to slow.

In some places, such as New Jersey, New York state and the District of Columbia, the number of new cases is plateauing at relatively high levels, the analysts said.

Some communities are loosening social distancing rules, and COVID-19 virus variants continue to spread, the analysts added.

“The B.1.1.7 variant, first found in the U.K., now accounts for around 30% of cases in the U.S.,” the analysts reported.

A particle of SARS-CoV-2 — the virus that causes COVID-19. (Image: CDC)