By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – COVID-19 is putting a strain on Pennsylvania’s health care system as cases continue and hospitalizations continue to rise.

On Monday, hospitalizations were 18 percent higher than the previous week, the Pennsylvania Health Department said. Data from the department shows the state averaged over 27,000 cases from Jan. 3-9, up more than 66% compared to the previous week.

In Allegheny County from Jan. 2-8, over 23,000 new infections were reported. Of those, 9% were reinfections and 42% were in unvaccinated people. During that time, 47 more people died, bringing the county death toll to 2,725.

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Acting Health Secretary Keara Klinepeter urged Pennsylvanians to get vaccinated and boostered.

“Getting a booster dose of COVID-19 vaccine is the best thing we can do to help the healthcare workers across the state who are overwhelmed by the number of patients with COVID-19 who need specialized and extensive care as hospitals are nearing capacity,” Klinepeter said in a press release. “Sadly, the risk of hospitalization due to COVID-19 is significantly higher for those that are unvaccinated.

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According to the CDC, 76.4% of Pennsylvanian adults are vaccinated. Across the state — minus Philadelphia County, which is in a separate jurisdiction — there was a 16.2% increase in vaccinations compared to the previous week.