This transmission electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells cultured in the lab.

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana is continuing its record-setting increases in COVID-19 hospitalizations and new infections, state health officials said Tuesday as the state once again surpassed 4,000 new cases and reported 63 more deaths.

The newly reported deaths raised Indiana's pandemic death toll to 4,731, including confirmed and presumed coronavirus infections, the Indiana State Department of Health said in its daily statistics update.

The 4,879 new infections reported Tuesday were Indiana's second-highest daily count of newly reported COVID-19 cases and marked the sixth straight day the state reported more than 4,000 new cases.

Indiana's seven-day rolling average for newly confirmed cases rose to 4,490, according to Tuesday's daily update of the state's coronavirus dashboard. That is the highest level Indiana has seen during the pandemic and more than five times the seven-day rolling average of 858 newly confirmed cases the agency reported on Sept. 22.

Indiana's hospitalizations were also at an all-time high, setting a record for the eighth straight day with 2,336 patients admitted. Of those hospitalized, 599 were in intensive care — the most since April 25.

New positive cases and COVID-19 hospitalizations have grown since Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb announced Sept. 23 that he was lifting nearly all of Indiana's COVID-19 restrictions while extending the statewide mask mandate. Since then, Holcomb has continued to resist calls for reinstating coronavirus restrictions. The governor said last Wednesday he's not making any changes to COVID-19 policy, including no statewide closure of schools.

State Health Commissioner Dr. Kris Box said last week that Indiana's hospitals and healthcare workers are swamped and "needing support now more than ever." Box said staffing issues remain the greatest challenge, and state officials have renewed their call for retired health care workers to help relieve staff at Indiana's hospitals and long-term care facilities.

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