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Stock photo: Nurse standing by patient in hospital bed

Nearly 3 in 10 adults in the United States have not been vaccinated against Covid-19. Although the toll on public health has been well-documented, increased hospitalizations also are also costing taxpayer-funded public insurance programs, as well as workers and businesses that pay health insurance premiums.

Real-time data on the aggregate cost of Covid-19 hospitalizations are not publicly available. Still, various sources point to an average hospitalization cost of around $20,000 per patient. Unvaccinated adults accounted for 37,000 Covid-19 hospitalizations in June and another 76,000 in July in the United States, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

“If each of these hospitalizations cost roughly $20,000, that would mean these largely avoidable hospitalizations have already cost the U.S. health system billions of dollars since the beginning of June,” the Peterson-KFF Health System Tracker reported. “Based on our estimates, we find preventable Covid-19 cost the U.S. health system $2.3 billion in June and July 2021.”

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