Story at a glance
- Georgia is one of the states seeing an increase in new coronavirus cases.
- Public health experts and government officials largely advise against gathering in crowded spaces for the Fourth of July holiday this weekend.
The state of Georgia hit another daily record of new coronavirus cases Wednesday, part of a disturbing national trend that persists for much of the U.S., including states like California, Arizona, New Mexico and South Carolina.
CBS News reports that Georgia added almost 3,000 new cases, shattering the old record by approximately 700 cases.
Currently, state data indicates that Georgia has 84,237 confirmed cases, showcasing an upward trajectory since mid-June. The U.S. also saw a single-day record high of new cases on Wednesday, more than 50,000.
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Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R), who ushered in a relatively early reopening compared to the rest of the country during the pandemic, toured the state to prompt residents to use face masks when in public — a move public health experts say will help decrease disease transmission.
Two Georgia hotspots are located in Fulton and DeKalb counties, both of which contain parts of capital city Atlanta.
Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms (D), who opposed Kemp’s early reopening plans, said that the current upticks in cases are a result of his decision.
“We were one of the first states to open up, and so I think opening up so aggressively, we're now paying for it on the back-end,” Bottoms said on MSNBC Tuesday night.
Many public health experts link the surge of new cases to younger people attending private social gatherings. A recent study conducted by Emory University suggests that these gatherings are responsible for part of the virus’s rapid spread and urged people to wear face masks and avoid large groups.
“We know that these events happen. We also know how to prevent them,” said Emory University assistant professor Kristin Nelson, one of the study’s co-authors.
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