If You Live in These States, Your COVID Risk Is "Extremely High"

These four states are seeing the highest new cases numbers within their borders.

After experiencing months of skyrocketing COVID-19 cases through late fall and early winter, the U.S. is finally seeing a national drop in numbers. But even as new COVID cases begin to plateau throughout most of the nation, some areas continue to see a particularly high number of new cases. According to recent figures reported by The New York Times, there are currently four states where there is still an "extremely high risk" of contracting COVID. Read on to see which places are most widely affected, and for more on how COVID is spreading where you live, find out How Bad the COVID Outbreak Is in Your State.

While newly reported COVID cases may be on a downward trajectory nationwide, many areas' new COVID case rates are decreasing from such astronomical levels that there's still a high likelihood of community transmission. And according to a county-by-county data visualization map prepared by The New York Times, large areas of the U.S. are still at the highest risk level with more than 640 cases reported per 100,000 people during the past two weeks—including four states where all or all but one county fall into the highest risk tier.

People in counties that are at the highest risk level are advised to avoid indoor activities, including "indoor dining, bars, gyms, movie theaters, and nonessential shopping, as well as having friends over to your home, and indoor personal care services like haircuts and manicures," The Times reports. It's also recommended that all non-essential travel should be avoided, as well as events with "more than a handful of people," such as sporting events, weddings, funerals, and concerts.

"Given the severity of the outbreak, spending time inside with people from other households puts you at risk for getting the coronavirus or spreading it to others," note public health officials at Johns Hopkins University, who analyzed the data.

Read on to find out which states are currently ranked as the riskiest as of Jan. 28, based on data from The Times and Covid Act Now. And for insight into when coronavirus numbers might finally turn around for good, COVID Will Be "Dramatically Better" by This Date, FDA Official Says.


city skyline of Cincinnati, Ohio at dusk

Counties affected: All except Mahoning County

Statewide daily new cases per 100,000 people: 43.8

And for the latest from the White House medial adviser, check out Dr. Fauci Says Doing This After Getting Vaccinated Is a Huge Mistake.


atlanta georgia

Counties affected: All

Statewide daily new cases per 100,000 people: 66.4

And for more on what the first half of the new year might hold, see why COVID Researchers Just Issued Their Bleakest 2021 Prediction Yet.

South Carolina

Scenic View of the St. Michaels Church from Broad St. in Charleston, SC

Counties affected: All

Statewide daily new cases per 100,000 people: 76.0

And for the latest COVID news delivered straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.


An aerial view of downtown Phoenix, Arizona and the surrounding urban area.

Counties affected: All except Greenlee County

Statewide daily new cases per 100,000 people: 92

And for more updates you should be aware of, The CDC Just Issued This Alarming New COVID Warning.

Best Life is constantly monitoring the latest news as it relates to COVID-19 in order to keep you healthy, safe, and informed. Here are the answers to your most burning questions, the ways you can stay safe and healthy, the facts you need to know, the risks you should avoid, the myths you need to ignore,and the symptoms to be aware of. Click here for all of our COVID-19 coverage, and sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.
Zachary Mack
Zach is a freelance writer specializing in beer, wine, food, spirits, and travel. He is based in Manhattan. Read more
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