RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – North Carolina’s COVID-19 hospitalizations continued to climb on Tuesday, reaching a new record of 1,724.
That breaks the previous all-time high of 1,601 set on Monday, according to data released by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.
The rate of hospitalizations was trending up before the CDC released new guidelines in mid-November – creating a sharp increase on Nov. 12.
The overwhelming majority of hospitalizations are patients 60 and older. Patients under the age of 40 make up approximately 16 percent of all hospitalizations.
Tuesday’s numbers released by NCDHHS included 3,100 new lab-confirmed cases, bringing the state’s total to 342,294.
North Carolina has now returned more than 5 million tests since the start of the pandemic.
Tuesday’s percent positive rate was 6.5 percent – a slight drop from Monday’s 6.6 percent.
Gov. Roy Cooper announced a stricter state-wide mask mandate on Monday that says North Carolinians must wear a mask at home when you have friends or family over to visit as well as wearing a mask at work, at the gym, at the store, and at school.
Cooper said his latest executive order makes it “clear that everyone needs to wear a mask whenever you are with someone you don’t live with.”
“I have a stark warning for North Carolinians today. We are in danger. This is a pivotal moment in our fight against the coronavirus. Our actions now will determine the fate of many,” Cooper said.
CBS 17 will update this story.
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