COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – The U.S. hit a grime milestone in the COVID-19 pandemic, according to research and data collected by John Hopkins University, over 1 million new cases were identified on Monday Jan. 3 making it the highest amount of new cases in a single the US has seen.

These rocketing case numbers may not even be all the positive cases in the country. With at home tests becoming more frequently used Executive Director of the COVID task force for the Piedmont Healthcare System Dr. Jayne Morgan said our cases numbers could be vastly under-represented.

“If you look at the number of unit that represents at 25 dollars per unit, that’s about 60 million units sold, there’s about two tests in every unit, 120 million tests, that answers your question,” said Dr. Morgan. “That’s 120 million results that potentially we don’t know the results of those. So we absolutely know that as we are posting these daily case rates it is probably under represented by maybe 10 fold.”

While this can be an alarming discrepancy in case numbers Dr. Morgan said the use of at home tests is good because people are getting their results, beginning their isolation period and doing their own contact tracing.

In addition to this new wave of at home testing kits something we are also seeing in this new wave is an increase in pediatric hospitalizations.

While some believe this variant is not deadly as other strains Dr. Morgan said this has not been proven yet and despite this how highly contagious this variant is increases the sheer volume of COVID-19 patients which could very easily overwhelm our hospitals.

“If we continue on this course we will not only meet it, but we will surpass where we were with Delta, which this is not a competition that we were trying to win,” said Dr. Morgan. “We don’t want to have a surge that beat the previous surge, but if we continue on this trajectory we certainly within the week will surpass where we were with delta and these are hospitalization cases.”

Dr. Morgan explained there is one common factor that data and research is showing within this population of hospitalized cases, they’re unvaccinated.

“Almost every single patient who is admitted, wherever you are in the 50 states, here in the United States… you are unvaccinated,” said Dr. Morgan. “It is the same from state to state to state so absolutely I can back up what I’m saying because we see what the data is inside our hospitals.”

She also said Omicron is our warning as to how these variants can penetrate the therapeutic methods like monoclonal antibody methods and our vaccines.

However, Dr. Morgan shares if you are fully boosted and up to date on your vaccines your protection against getting seriously ill or hospitalized goes up to 75%. Which is why healthcare officials all over the world are encouraging you to get vaccinated or get your booster shot if you’re already vaccinated.

“If you get your booster you’re back up at about 75% protection from getting seriously ill and hospitalized,” said Dr. Mrogan. “And that’s the success of these vaccines, keeping you out of the hospital and keeping you out of the morgue.”