Population-based rates of laboratory-confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)–associated hospitalizations are lacking in the United States. This CDC report describes the implementation of the Coronavirus Disease 2019–Associated Hospitalization Surveillance Network (COVID-NET), which was created to produce robust, weekly, age-stratified COVID-19–associated hospitalization rates.
During March 1–28, 2020, COVID-NET found that hospitalization rates increased with age and werehighest among older adults; the majority of hospitalized patients had underlying conditions.
Strategies to prevent COVID-19, including social distancing, respiratory hygiene, and face coverings in public settings where social distancing measures are difficult to maintain, are particularly important to protect older adults and those with underlying conditions. Ongoing monitoring of hospitalization rates is critical to understanding the evolving epidemiology of COVID-19 in the United States and to guide planning and prioritization of health care resources.