RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — The record number of people in North Carolina hospitalized with COVID-19 has surged past 5,000 for the first time.

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services said Tuesday that 5,055 people were in hospitals with the disease — an increase of 150 from the then-record of 4,905 the day before.

NCDHHS also reported its smallest single-day new case count in three weeks, but that total of 13,017 comes with an asterisk: A disclaimer on the online dashboard says delays in labs reporting tests may occur because they are processing “unprecedented numbers” of them.

The agency also reported fewer than 14,000 total vaccine doses given, the fewest in at least two months — but that lower-than-normal total likely reflects the number of vaccination sites that were temporarily shut down during the weekend’s snowstorm.

The state also says 36 percent — or, more than 1 in 3 — of the most recent batch of tests confirmed a COVID case and added 46 deaths to the total.

The biggest takeaway from Tuesday’s numbers was the continued increase in the patient count, which has skyrocketed due to the fast-spreading omicron variant. The total climbed past 5,000 only 13 days after it first surpassed 4,000 on Jan. 12, has gone up on 27 of the past 30 days and has increased by 17 percent just since Jan. 17.

The daily case count is the smallest since Jan. 4, when there were 10,276. Wednesday was just the fifth day since then when fewer than 20,000 were reported.

VACCINE DOSE COUNT:
2,148 first doses
2,997 second doses
113 single-shot J&J doses
8,334 booster doses
13,592 total doses