ATLANTA — All eyes were on Georgia two months ago as the state became one of the first to make the crucial decision to reopen after a coronavirus lockdown. Now, numbers are on the rise.
As of Friday, 10,605 people have been diagnosed with COVID-19 while in the hospital. And there were 148 new hospital diagnoses.
"We have to learn to live with this and we're going to have to accept that we are going to have new cases but we want the number to be as low as possible so people have got to be responsible," 11Alive medical expert Dr. Sujatha Reddy said.
On the bright side, over the last week, only 10 percent of new COVID-19 cases may be needing hospital treatment, according to the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA).
Still, the White House Coronavirus Task Force addressed the nation on Friday for the first time in two months.
"We are facing a very serious problem in some areas," Dr. Anthony Fauci with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said.
Meanwhile, Georgia bars and restaurants remain open. During a happy hour in Midtown, we saw a number of people dining, mostly without masks. But the Georgia Department of Public Health said that could lead to another spike.
In a statement, the department wrote:
“If people are out and about and are not adhering to guidance about social distancing, wearing face coverings and washing their hands frequently, cases will increase. COVID-19 is still present throughout the state and these basic preventive measures, along with widespread testing and contact tracing are necessary to stop the spread of infection.”