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Coronavirus Hospitalizations Spike in Nine States following Memorial Day Weekend

Visitors walk and shop on the boardwalk after the coronavirus restrictions were lifted in time for the Memorial Day weekend in Atlantic City, N.J., May 25, 2020. (Jessica Kourkounis/Reuters)

Hospitalizations from coronavirus rose sharply in at least nine U.S. states following Memorial Day weekend.

Seven-day average cases of coronavirus have risen across the country in a trend not attributable solely to an increase in testing, the Washington Post has found. While coronavirus hospitalizations are difficult to track because of differences in how states report data, the nine states in which hospitalizations have clearly risen are Texas, California, Oregon, North and South Carolina, Mississippi, Utah, Arkansas, and Arizona.

Texas has seen a 36 percent increase in new cases since Memorial Day, with coronavirus hospitalizations at a record high of 2,056 as of Tuesday. There were 1,935 hospitalizations in the state on Monday.

Arizona reported a 49 percent increase in hospitalizations, from 833 on Memorial Day to 1,243 by Tuesday. At the same time, 76 percent of the state’s ICU beds were occupied. Other states that have seen an increase in coronavirus cases, including Arkansas, reported that ICU’s were still operating below full capacity.

States have been steadily moving to reopen businesses and tourist sites initially closed to prevent coronavirus spread, with Texas lifting restrictions in early May. Cities throughout the U.S. have also seen massive demonstrations following the death of George Floyd, an African American man killed during his arrest by police officers, in which protesters have not adhered to social-distancing guidelines.

However, in certain instances large gatherings of people do not seem to have caused a spike in coronavirus cases. For example, Memorial Day parties at Missouri’s Lake of the Ozarks, in which hundreds of revelers were photographed in close proximity, have not led to any new coronavirus outbreaks.

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Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.

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