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Pike County tops 500 cases

Pike County topped 500 confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday.

According to the Alabama Department of Public Health’s 10 a.m. update, an additional 10 positive cases were reported overnight with one additional death, bringing the county’s totals to 501 confirmed cases and six deaths.

More than 1,784 new cases were reported statewide, bringing Alabama’s total to 58,225 total cases and 1,183.

Gov. Kay Ivey said during her 11 a.m. press conference that over the past 14 days, the total number of cases rose by 50 percent and the number of patients hospitalized continues to increase.

“A full third of all the cases we’ve had have been added in the past two weeks,” said Dr. Scott Harris, state health officers. “This is not a reflection of testing, because the percentage of the positive tests continues to go up …

“I think by next week we’ll see 16 to 17 percent of all tests coming back positive. We clearly have more disease circulating in the community.”

As of Wednesday morning, 1,477 COVID-19 patients were hospitalized throughout the state, with 541 under investigation.

“And 30 hospitals in the state have very limited or no ICU capacity,” Harris said.

The governor issued a statewide mask order on Wednesday, in effect until July 31. The order requires everyone to wear a mask in public and allows for a fine of up to $500 for violating the order.