RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — The state reported 96 more COVID-19 deaths, the biggest single-day jump since February, while the number of patients in hospitals crept closer to the January peak.
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services on Thursday added nearly 8,000 new cases, said nearly 3,800 patients were hospitalized across the state, and reported one-point increases to two key vaccination percentages.
The 96 deaths are the most reported from one day to the next since Feb. 24, when 109 were reported.
Deaths do not always take place on the day they are reported, and NCDHHS does not specify which day they come in if they are reported during a weekend, instead combining those into the Monday update.
August, with 881 deaths, was the pandemic’s deadliest month since February, according to NCDHHS date-of-death data.
A total of 14,625 people have died during the pandemic.
With 7,901 new cases, it marks the fifth time in eight days that at least 7,000 were reported. The seven-day average exceeded 6,500 new cases for the sixth day in a row.
The 3,789 hospitalized patients are an increase of 10 from the total Wednesday, and is the highest total since there were 3,881 on Jan. 19 — five days after that number peaked at 3,992 on Jan. 14.
NCDHHS says the percentage of the state’s 10.4 million people who have had at least one dose of vaccine ticked up to 55 percent, and 64 percent of people eligible to receive the vaccine — those 12 and older — have gotten their first shot.
Half of the total population is fully vaccinated, as is 58 percent of those 12 and older.
13,203 first doses
940 single-shot J&J doses
26,456 total doses