The number of coronavirus patients in Indiana hospitals grew over the weekend to the highest level in nearly five months, state health officials said Monday.
The 1,238 COVID-19 hospitalizations as of Sunday marked the eighth straight day topping 1,000 after not reaching that high since the end of May, the Indiana State Department of Health reported.
Hospitalizations have increased nearly 65% since Sept. 19, just before Gov. Eric Holcomb decided to lift nearly all of Indiana’s restrictions on businesses and crowd sizes that he had imposed to slow the coronavirus spread.
The health department’s daily update showed Indiana’s seven-day rolling average of new cases continued growing at record levels, reaching 1,519 as of Sunday. That’s a 75% increase from two weeks earlier.
Six additional deaths were added Monday to the state’s toll, raising it to 3,795, including confirmed and presumed coronavirus cases. That is an increase of 114 deaths in the past week.
Democratic governor candidate Woody Myers, a former state health commissioner, said Friday that tougher restrictions needed to be reinstated and that Holcomb’s steps have the state moving “in the wrong direction.”
Holcomb has defended his decision to lift most coronavirus restrictions other than the statewide mask mandate. Holcomb urged residents to continue taking precautions and that the COVID-19 spread is being monitored daily.