RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — New COVID-19 cases in North Carolina plunged to their lowest weekly level since the first weeks of the pandemic in 2020.

The 2,408 new cases reported from April 9-15 marked the fewest in a week since mid-April 2020, according to the weekly update Wednesday from the state Department of Health and Human Services.

New hospital admissions for COVID also fell to their lowest level since NCDHHS shifted to updating those numbers weekly in March 2022, and the count of viral particles in wastewater also dropped 40 percent after a one-week spike.

The new case count has fallen in every week of 2023. The latest weekly total hit the lowest point since the week that ended April 18, 2020, when a total of 1,994 cases were reported.

NCDHHS says 231 people were admitted to hospitals with COVID — the 14th consecutive week that total has fallen.

It also says that for the first time since early April 2022, fewer than two percent of emergency room visits across the state were because of COVID-like symptoms. That rate fell to 1.8 percent last week.

The state added 17 more deaths, bringing the total for the pandemic to 28,962.