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HHS ups testing efforts for people under 35

 Wearing masks amid concerns of the spread of COVID-19, volunteer Carolina Salazar, left, talks with Maria Fernandez during a drive through food pantry distribution by Catholic Charities in Dallas, Thursday, July 2, 2020. (AP Photo/LM Otero)
Wearing masks amid concerns of the spread of COVID-19, volunteer Carolina Salazar, left, talks with Maria Fernandez during a drive through food pantry distribution by Catholic Charities in Dallas, Thursday, July 2, 2020. (AP Photo/LM Otero) (GRAYDC)
Published: Jul. 2, 2020 at 4:40 PM EDT
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The number of confirmed coronavirus cases per day in the U.S. climbed to an all-time high of more than 50,000, Thursday.

According to a tally kept by Johns Hopkins University, 36 states are seeing an increase in the percentage of tests coming back positive for the virus. The outbreaks are most severe in Arizona, Texas, and Florida.

Officials with the Department of Health and Human Services say the agency is providing 'surge testing' and additional health care workers to localities that are experiencing a rise in positive cases.

“We are seeing an uptick in the number of infections,” said HHS Assistant Secretary for Health and pediatrician ADM Brett Giroir, M.D. “We know that it’s those under 35 who are asymptomatic, so we want to get massive testing into those areas to try to understand who might be infected and then get them isolated.”

Giroir says the recent increase in positive cases can most likely be attributed to those 35 and younger who are asymptotic. He’s encouraging folks to practice social distancing and personal hygiene to slow the spread.

Giroir says healthcare officials are currently testing more than 550,000 people each day, although, he acknowledges testing availability varies based on location. He says the federal government is also deploying medical teams to counties in need of assistance.

The surge comes as Americans head into the Fourth of July holiday.

Copyright 2020 Gray DC. All rights reserved.

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