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The U.S. is vaccinating in record numbers, but how is that affecting case counts?

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said Saturday the group now hardest hit is young people, especially those between 18 and 24 years old.

HOUSTON — Coronavirus infections and hospitalizations are on the rise nationwide despite the U.S. hitting a new vaccination record, and according to CDC experts, young people may be leading the trend.

Houston is no different. According to the Texas Medical Center COVID-19 dashboard, daily new cases and the positivity rate locally are also trending upward.

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky has attributed the increase nationally to highly transmissible variants and youth sports and extracurricular activities.

“As we’ve been working with states and understanding their individual outbreaks among younger people," Walensky said. "I want to underscore that this is among 18 to 24-year-olds where we’re seeing peaks in cases."

The Houston Health Department shared Monday that the 14-day positivity rate has leveled off, however, some local hospital leaders are seeing numbers increase within the hospital systems.

National officials report COVID-related hospital admissions are up 3% from last week. Meanwhile, the United States is in its fourth consecutive week of increased case numbers.

However, there is some good news: deaths are down.