ALABAMA (WHNT) – By the looks of recent data gathered by the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH), COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in Alabama are once again increasing.

Healthcare professionals told News 19 that COVID-19 cases and hospitalization could increase even more because of the Fourth of July holiday.

Something important to note, is that health experts say the data we’re seeing, especially now, is not accurate. However, based on what we can see, COVID-19 is spreading at a rather quick pace.

Just to paint a bigger picture, the entire state has a 22 percent positivity rate. Madison County alone is at 26 percent. This means a little more than 1 in every 4 COVID-19 tests administered are coming back positive. In the last seven days, Alabama has seen more than 7,100 new COVID-19 cases. 910 of those were detected here in Madison County.

Health officials are noticing that the number of deaths related to COVID-19 is not increasing on the same scale. Huntsville Hospital System President Tracy Doughty says that is likely a result of herd immunity due to the vaccine.

Roughly 2.38 million Alabamians have completed their initial vaccine series. 896,000 additional doses, or boosters, have also been administered.

Health officials continue to remind everyone, especially as you celebrate big gathering holidays like the Fourth of July, that there are things you can do to slow the spread. Starting with staying away from people if you know you’re sick, and even if you aren’t sick, keeping clean hands and masking up aren’t bad ideas.