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Posted on August 20th, 2021 in Article, Publication, Research by Aaron Dusso

Dr. Sumedha Gupta recently published the article, “US Trends in COVID-19–Associated Hospitalization and Mortality Rates Before and After Reopening Economies,” in the journal JAMA Health Forum.


Importance  After abrupt closures of businesses and public gatherings in the US in late spring 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, by mid-May 2020, most states reopened their economies. Owing in part to a lack of earlier data, there was little evidence on whether state reopening policies influenced important pandemic outcomes—COVID-19–related hospitalizations and mortality—to guide future decision-making in the remainder of this and future pandemics.

Objective  To investigate changes in COVID-19–related hospitalizations and mortality trends after reopening of US state economies.

Design, Setting, and Participants  Using an interrupted time series approach, this cross-sectional study examined trends in per-capita COVID-19–related hospitalizations and deaths before and after state reopenings between April 16 and July 31, 2020. Daily state-level data from the University of Minnesota COVID-19 Hospitalization Tracking Project on COVID-19–related hospitalizations and deaths across 47 states were used in the analysis.

Exposures  Dates that states reopened their economies.

Main Outcomes and Measures  State-day observations of COVID-19–related hospitalizations and COVID-19–related new deaths per 100 000 people.

Sumedha Gupta is an Associate Professor in the Department of Economics, IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI