Virginia recorded its highest daily total of coronavirus cases in two weeks, just two days before the state is scheduled to enter phase one of reopening.
On Thursday, officials reported 1,067 new cases, the most in a single day and the highest since 1,055 cases were recorded on May 1. There are now more than 28,000 cases and 978 deaths in the state.
According to WHSV, 19.5 percent of recent tests came back positive, a higher proportion than the current state average of 14 percent.
The new figures are concerning, especially with nonessential businesses allowed to open with restrictions beginning Friday at 12.01am, and health officials suggesting a rate of 10 percent or lower before reopening.
However, Virginia is not the only state to see spikes ahead of reopening plans. Texas, Louisiana and Florida are all seeing increases in cases even as their governors push ahead with reopening plans.
On Thursday, Virginia health officials reported 1,067 new coronavirus cases, the most in a single day and the highest since May 1 (pictured)
Northern Virginia is delaying opening until at least May 28 due to a positive test rate of 25% (above)
A demonstrator protesting against lockdown measures in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic in Richmond, Virginia, April 22
The news of the spike in Virginia led to several regions requesting a delay in reopening.
Governor Ralph Northam granted requests for Accomack County, which has the third-highest number of cases, and the City of Richmond.
‘As I have said previously, Virginia’s Phase One guidelines represent a floor, not a ceiling,’ Northam said in a statement.
‘I have encouraged local leaders to request exemptions when appropriate, and I am pleased to grant the delays for both Accomack County and the City of Richmond.’
According to WAVY, Accomack, which has a population of about 32,000, has seen its cases mainly come from two chicken plans.
This is similar to states such as Nebraska and Iowa, which have seen infections soar among workers at meatpacking plants.
Surprisingly, the county had nearly 600 more cases than Virginia Beach, the state’s largest city with more than 450,000 people, reported WAVY.
Meanwhile, the City of Richmond is in Richmond County, which has the second-highest number of cases.
Zumba Gold instructor, Stacey Zebrowski, center, leads a class at the Shady Grove YMCA on May 15 as Virginia enters phase one of reopening
Northern Virginia is also delaying its opening until at least May 29 because it is so hard-hit.
WAVY reported that the region was reporting a 25 percent positive test rate, while most of the state is seeing a rate of about 10 percent.
In fact, more than two-thirds of Thursday’s new cases came from Northern Virginia.
Some officials have said the numbers in Virginia are not to be feared because the state has increased its testing.
On Thursday, Virginia performed 5,467 new tests, inching closer to is goal of 10,000 tests per day.
Additionally, the argument is made that the high number of cases coming out of Northern Virginia are skewing test results.
Other states are also seeing spikes as they prepare to reopen. Louisiana, for example, saw a large increase in COVID-19 cases for second day in a row.
On Thursday, Lousiaina healt officials reported a jump of more than 600 new cases on Thursday, the largest single-day increas
Texas reported its largest increase of daily cases and deaths, but Gov Greg Abbott said he’s moving ahead with reopening plans. Pictured: A woman wearing a face mask for protection against COVID-19 passes a business that has reopened in San Antonio, May 14
The state’s Department of Health reported a jump of more than 600 new cases on Thursday, the largest single-day increase in Louisiana since May 1
Yet, Governor John Bel Edwards said he is still lifting the state’s stay at home order on Friday, May 15.
And, on Sunday, churches and other places of worship are allowed to reopen at 25 percent capacity.
Texas reported 1,448 more cases of the new coronavirus Thursday, an increase of about 3% over the previous day, bringing the total number of known cases to 43,851.
Additionally, Texas reported its largest increase of daily cases and deaths.
Officials recorded 1,448 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, a three percent from the previous day, and 58 news deaths, which is a five percent jump from Wednesday.
Yet, Governor Greg Abbott said he is going to announce another set of reopening plans on Monday.
‘We’re opening Texas as fast as possible while also containing the spread of COVID-19,’ he told KETK-TV on Wednesday.
And, in Florida, state health officials reported a total of 43,210 cases of coronavirus and 1,875 deaths.
But the news didn’t sway Governor Ron DeSantis, who is expected to announce the reopening of gyms on Friday, reported Fox 35 Orlando.
Gyms were not supposed to reopen until phase 2 but DeSantis said he thought it was important residents had access to fitness centers.
‘First of all, this is a virus, that if you’re in good shape, you’re probably going to be okay,’ he said during a press conference on Thursday.
‘So why would we want to dissuade people from going to be in shape?’