Healthcare

Four states report record number of new COVID-19 cases

Wisconsin, Minnesota, Oregon and Utah all hit records for single-day increases in the number of COVID-19 infections Friday as the country surpassed 7 million total cases, according to an analysis by Reuters

Reuters reported that, according to its tally, Wisconsin had the largest number of new infections out of the four states on Friday at 2,629, surpassing its previous record of 2,533 cases last Friday. However, as of Saturday morning, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services website recorded only 2,504 newly confirmed cases Friday. 

The Minnesota Department of Health recorded 1,191 new cases on Friday, while Utah reported nearly 1,370 and Oregon recorded close to 460. 

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz (D) announced on Twitter on Friday that the state would be holding free COVID-19 testing in various cities next week amid the state's spike in cases. 

Reuters said in its analysis that all Midwestern states excluding Ohio reported more cases over the past four weeks than in the four weeks prior. 

The outlet also reported that hospitalizations of COVID-19 patients hit new highs in Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming this week. 

These numbers come after Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) on Tuesday declared a new public health emergency following spikes in cases on college campuses in the state. The governor also extended the state's mandatory mask mandate. 

In the order, Evers activated the Wisconsin National Guard to provide support on Election Day and oversee community testing locations. 

"We need folks to start taking this seriously, and young people especially-please stay home as much as you are able, skip heading to the bars, and wear a mask whenever you go out. We need your help to stop the spread of this virus, and we all have to do this together," Evers said in a statement on Tuesday

In a video address tweeted by Wisconsin's health department Friday, Evers said that "Wisconsin is now experiencing unprecedented, near-exponential growth of the number of COVID-19 cases in our state," adding that a larger portion of cases came from young people aged 18-24. 

"It is critical that we work together now to get this virus under control, not only to protect our campus communities, but for the health and safety of Wisconsinites in every corner of our state," Evers said in the video. 

As of Saturday morning, The New York Times reported that more than 7,059,200 people in the U.S. have been infected with the virus since it hit the country, leaving more than 200,000 people dead.

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