WASHINGTON, D.C. – As restrictions are eased around the country, several states are seeing higher rates of coronavirus infections.
Data tracked by The Washington Post shows that since the beginning of June, 14 states and Puerto Rico have recorded their highest seven-day average of new COVID-19 cases since the pandemic began.
Those states include Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Kentucky, New Mexico, North Carolina, Mississippi, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Utah, according to The Post.
CNN reports that the number of states seeing upward trends in coronavirus cases is even higher, at 22.
With many of these states, like Florida and Mississippi, now under only minor-to-moderate restrictions, health experts worry the spread of the virus could snowball in these areas and possibly overwhelm hospitals.
The first wave of the pandemic moved through major metropolitan areas, like New York City and Los Angeles, but those cities are now moving towards reopening. Now, The Post reports that the highest percentages of new cases are coming from places with much smaller populations.
As of Tuesday, more than 111,000 people have died from COVID-19 in the U.S. and over 1.96 million cases have been confirmed in the country, according to a running tally by Johns Hopkins University.
There is some good news though. Researchers at Berkley University found that travel restrictions, business and school closures, shelter-in-place orders and other non-pharmaceutical interventions averted roughly 530 million COVID-19 infections across the six countries in the study period ending April 6.
Of those infections, 62 million would likely have been “confirmed cases,” given limited testing in each country, researchers said.