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US COVID-19 hospitalizations surpass 90,000 in new record

US COVID-19 hospitalizations surpass 90,000 in new record
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The number of current COVID-19-related hospitalizations in the U.S. surpassed 90,000 for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic.

The U.S. reached the grim milestone on Thursday as the nation celebrated Thanksgiving, and health experts expect the holiday gatherings to cause a massive uptick in new cases and hospitalizations. 

The country currently has 90,481 people hospitalized for coronavirus — a record-breaking number for the 17th day in a row, according to the COVID Tracking Project

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Out of those, 17,802 people are in the intensive care unit, which is the highest amount documented during the pandemic. A total of 5,979 people are on ventilators. 

The COVID Tracking Project has noted that it expects states to report fewer testing, case and death statistics on Thanksgiving and the weekend after as people are focused on the holiday. The experts predict that the numbers will then “catch up” in the following days. 

Still, the U.S. confirmed 125,082 new cases on Thanksgiving, a slight dip from the more than 150,000 new cases reported every day since Nov. 16. 

Several states also either broke records or got close to breaking records for the most cases documented in a single day; Pennsylvania and Massachusetts reached new highs with 8,425 and 3,395 new cases on Thursday, respectively. 

Massachusetts did have an unusual spike of 3,840 new cases on June 1, which data experts have attributed to a “probable data” release, according to The New York Times.

Other states like Ohio and Arkansas reported their second-highest single-day new case count with 10,835 and 2,348 new cases, respectively. New York reached its highest single-day new case count since April with 6,933 new cases on Thanksgiving. 

The U.S. death toll jumped by 1,319 fatalities on Thanksgiving, making the nation's total reach 254,530 deaths, according to the COVID Tracking Project.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned Americans last week not to travel for Thanksgiving to prevent the spread of the virus, but many were still expected to travel for the holiday and gather with family.