coronavirus

Mass. Confirms Over 5,000 New COVID Cases in 1 Day for 1st Time Since January

The number of patients in Massachusetts hospitals with confirmed COVID-19 cases increased to 989 while the state's test positivity rate fell to 4.94%

NBC10 Boston

Massachusetts health officials reported another 5,170 confirmed COVID-19 cases -- the first single-day total over 5,000 since mid-January -- and 31 new deaths Thursday.

The report from the Department of Public Health pushed the state's number of confirmed COVID-19 cases to 865,450 since the start of the pandemic and its death toll to 19,047.

The last time Massachusetts reported more than 5,000 COVID cases in a single day was on Jan. 16, as last winter's surge was receding, state data shows.

Massachusetts' COVID metrics, tracked on the Department of Public Health's interactive coronavirus dashboard, dashboard, had been far lower than they were in spring, but have been rising lately. The discovery of omicron, a new COVID strain labeled a variant of concern by the World Health Organization over the Thanksgiving weekend, is being monitored in case it accelerates the recent surge statewide and across the U.S. -- though no cases have been identified in the Massachusetts so far.

Massachusetts' seven-day average of positive tests dropped from 5.14% on Wednesday to 4.94% on Thursday. The metric was once above 30%, but had dropped under 0.5% until the delta variant began surging in the state.

The number of patients in Massachusetts hospitals with confirmed COVID-19 cases increased to 989, the most since Feb. 18, according to state data; the figure was once nearly 4,000, but reached under an average of 85 at one point in July.

Of those currently hospitalized, 370 are fully vaccinated, 206 are in intensive care units and 109 are intubated.

Three top Boston doctors explain what the new omicron variant is, whether it's already in the U.S., what the symptoms are and if vaccines protect against it on the weekly “COVID Q&A” series.

More than 11.4 million vaccine doses have now been administered in Massachusetts.

That includes, from the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, nearly 5.4 million first shots, over 4.5 million second shots and short of 1.2 million booster shots. There have been more than 329,000 doses of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine administered.

Health officials on Thursday reported that a total of 4,883,161 Massachusetts residents have been fully vaccinated.