COVID

INDIANAPOLIS — State health officials added 28 more COVID-19 deaths in Indiana on Thursday as the state's seven-day rolling average of new cases of the respiratory disease has doubled in the past three weeks.

The newly recorded deaths raise Indiana's death toll to 3,864, including confirmed and presumed coronavirus infections, according to the Indiana State Department of Health. That's an increase of 122 deaths in the past week.

Gov. Eric Holcomb cited the increase in cases on Wednesday when he said he would continue the statewide mask mandate for another month. Holcomb, however, chastised those who resist wearing masks as disregarding the safety of others.

The Health Department's daily update showed Indiana's seven-day rolling average of newly confirmed COVID-19 infections reached 1,653 as of Wednesday. That is the highest level the state has seen during the pandemic and marks a doubling from the state's average of 825 new cases on Sept. 24.

Howard County cases now are at 1,515. Deaths stand at 66.

The 1,355 COVID-19 hospitalizations reported as of Wednesday keeps Indiana at its highest level since mid-May. Such hospitalizations have grown by two-thirds since late September when Holcomb decided to lift nearly all state restrictions on businesses and crowd sizes.

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