The county is moving to a weekly report and says omicron is fueling the latest wave.

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The Allegheny County Health Department is reporting 6,340 new COVID-19 cases and 48 deaths between December 19 and December 25.

The county has moved to a weekly report instead of a daily report, saying that they will be able to give more in-depth data on the pandemic as the world reels from the spread of the omicron variant.

Of the new cases, 7% of them (451) were reinfections and 49% of cases (3,119) were among people who were unvaccinated.

There have been 10,249 total hospitalizations and 169,393 total coronavirus cases in Allegheny County since the pandemic started.

The county-wide death toll stands at 2,637.

In the county, officials say around 918,000 residents have gotten one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and about 300,000 have gotten a booster shot.

Even though many are vaccinated, which reduces the risk of serious illness or death due to COVID-19, cases are rising, and County Executive Rich Fitzgerald urged all people to keep wearing masks in public spaces while the county experiences this surge.

“We continue to see increasing numbers of new infections reported to the Health Department, including reinfections and breakthrough cases. We know this number is an underreporting because many people are using home tests,” Health Director Dr. Debra Bogen said. “We confirmed last week the first local COVID-19 cases due to the omicron variant from tests as early as December 10. We know that the omicron variant spreads efficiently and is the likely cause of the rapidly rising case numbers. I anticipate that the number of cases will continue to rise in the coming weeks.”

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