CHICAGO (CBS) -- Illinois reported a new record for daily COVID-19 infections on Thursday, reporting more than 30,000 new infections in the past 24 hours, as the Omicron variant continues to fuel the latest surge of the pandemic.
The Illinois Department of Public Health reported 30,386 new confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, blowing past the old record of 21,131 cases by more than 40%.
Illinois is averaging 18,321 new coronavirus cases per day over the past week, the highest daily case average so far during the pandemic, and a 312% increase in the average number of daily cases since the start of December.
The state's seven-day average case positivity rate is up to 10.2%, the first time the infection rate has been above 10% in more than a year.
IDPH also reported 87 new COVID-19 deaths on Thursday, with Illinois now averaging 55 deaths per day over the past week, a 162% increase since the beginning of the month.
Statewide hospitalizations from COVID-19 also have surged in recent weeks. As of Wednesday night, 5,689 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 in Illinois, the most in more than a year, and a 131% increase in hospitalizations in more than a year. The record for COVID-19 hospitalizations in Illinois was set on Nov. 20, 2020, when 6,175 people were hospitalized.
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