A color-coded map of active COVID-19 cases in Oklahoma. See the interactive map below to find the data for your zip code. (Paul Monies/Oklahoma Watch)

Stillwater and Claremore were the latest hotspots to emerge in Oklahoma as hospitalizations reached new highs in the pandemic.

The number of cases reached 131,751 on Friday, with active cases at a new high of 17,095, according to the latest figures from the Oklahoma State Department of Health. The total number of deaths hit 1,429, an increase of 8% from a week ago.

More than a week into the effects of an ice storm that ravaged central Oklahoma, the 7-day moving average of new daily cases hit 1,465, its highest point in the pandemic since the first case of coronavirus hit in March. 

An analysis of ZIP code data from the health department showed big weekly increases in active cases in the Stillwater, Claremore, Owasso and Tulsa areas. Meanwhile, Yukon, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma City and Edmond ZIP codes had the highest number of active cases.

Active COVID-19 Cases By ZIP code

The latest case numbers come after a week that saw the highest number of COVID-19 hospitalizations across the state. Hospitalizations reached 1,055 on Wednesday, including 337 patients in intensive care units. The health department’s latest regional hospital report, released Thursday, put three of the state’s eight hospital regions into Tier 2, which triggers certain requirements for patient transfer and staffing within that region. The Oklahoma City region reached Tier 3, which cancels some surgeries to free up beds for COVID-19 patients.

Gov. Kevin Stitt continued to resist calls for a statewide mask mandate. The latest White House coronavirus report, dated Nov. 1, said the state should “focus testing to find the asymptomatic transmission. With cases and new hospital admissions at high levels, transmission must be reduced.” It said residents should always wear a mask in public settings and stop gatherings beyond the immediate household until cases and test positivity decrease significantly.

Meanwhile, a group of educators, public health officials and child welfare officials launched a campaign on Thursday for a statewide mask mandate for schools. In the summer, the State Board of Education voted 4-3 to leave the decision on masks to local school district as part of a package of COVID-19 safety precautions.


Why Oklahoma is Still Sitting On COVID-19 Relief Funds

Oklahoma lawmakers spent last summer vetting hundreds of applications for funding from the latest round of federal coronavirus relief and allocated more than $1.6 billion in the fall. But some are frustrated with the executive branch’s slow pace of sending the money to agencies and other grantees.

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