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Data from South Africa and the United Kingdom suggests that people hospitalized with the omicron variant tend to have shorter stays than those hospitalized with delta, allowing beds to turn over more quickly and somewhat reducing the strain on capacity, said Beth Carlton, an associate professor of environmental and occupational health at the Colorado School of Public Health. “The one encouraging bit of news is that we’re not seeing an exponential increase in hospital demand,” she said. Exponential growth is when numbers snowball, increasing by higher and higher rates.