RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Nearly 30,000 more new cases of COVID-19 were added in North Carolina and public health officials say the record number of patients in hospitals continued to grow.

The state Department of Health and Human Services on Thursday said 4,741 people were hospitalized with the virus — an increase of 14 — as the state’s omicron surge dragged into its third week.

A day after a comparatively lower number of new cases — just over 17,000, which would have been a record any time before the final week in December — NCDHHS added 29,580 of them.

But the seven-day average dipped back below 30,000 — after three days in which it had exceeded that number. North Carolina averaged 28,831 cases per day during the past week.

The state also added 71 deaths — one of the highest single-day totals in months — and once again reported a full third of the most recent batch of tests were found to be positive for the virus. The agency says 33.3 percent of tests from Tuesday confirmed new COVID cases.

VACCINE DOSE COUNT

  • 3,853 first doses
  • 4,289 second doses
  • 167 single-shot J&J doses
  • 14,902 booster doses
  • 23,211 total doses