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Statewide coronavirus update: Indiana reports another record high caseload

Statewide coronavirus update: Indiana reports another record high caseload

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Indiana on Thursday announced another record high of new coronavirus numbers Thursday, adding 1,962 cases as well as an additional 23 deaths. Three out of the past 10 days have seen record-breaking numbers of new cases.

The state's total tally for cases is now to 141,212 and 3,632 deaths.

The seven-day average positivity rate for unique individuals is now just below 10%, the same level as it was in mid-May.

Since that time, the state also has calculated the positivity rate for all tests, which health officials say provides a better sense of what is currently happening as it gives a window into how much testing is being done. The rate reported Thursday was 5.4%.

While that positivity rate has been rising in recent weeks, it is not nearly as high as it was in July.

The average number of tests performed over seven days also has risen to more than 23,750 as of last Thursday, the most recent day for which data is available.

Marion County added 243 cases in one day, according to the state's online coronavirus dashboard. Aside from a day in September when a reporting glitch brought more cases, this is the highest number of cases in a single day since early May. 

Here are some other statistics of note:

  • How many people in Indiana hospitals with COVID-19: 1,355.
  • Intensive care unit bed availability: 32.6% of 2,223 beds. 17% of beds are occupied by COVID patients.
  • Ventilator availability: 78.2% of 2,890.
  • State positivity rates (seven-day average rate as of Oct. 8): For all tests performed, 5.4%. For unique individuals, 9.9%.
  • Average number of deaths a day as of Oct. 8: 15.
  • Regenstrief Institute estimate of how many people are currently infected: 21,280.
  • Counties with more than 50 newly reported cases: Marion (243), Elkhart (152), Lake (138), St. Joseph (131), Allen (87), Delaware (72),Tippecanoe (68), Hamilton (57).
  • Counties with more than 20 newly reported cases: Porter (48), Vanderburgh (45), LaPorte (44), Wayne (42), Vigo (38), Johnson (32), Clark (39), Dubois (36), Madison (28), Hendricks (25), Noble (23), Dearborn (22), Marshall (22), Jackson (22), Kosciusko (22), Knox (21), Monroe (20), Fulton (20).
  • Counties with a 10% or higher seven-day average positivity rate: Fountain, Warren, Kosciusko, Union, Parke, Jackson, Brown, Posey, LaGrange, Sullivan, Pike, Orange, Dearborn.

-- Shari Rudavsky

Holcomb tests negative for coronavirus

Gov. Eric Holcomb has tested negative for coronavirus, his office announced Thursday. 

Holcomb began quarantining Wednesday after Indiana State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box said she had tested positive during the weekly coronavirus update.

Holcomb and other officials, including state chief medical officer Lindsay Weaver took both the Abbott rapid test and a nasopharyngeal PCR test. All tested negative on both tests.

Initially, Holcomb was tested "out of an abundance of caution" and was not considered to be one of Box's close contacts.

Box, who was asymptomatic as of Wednesday, said she and her daughter caught coronavirus from her 23-month-old grandson. She did not believe her professional contacts, including Holcomb, were at risk of exposure, as all had masked and social-distanced. 

“Janet and I are wishing Dr. Box and her family a speedy recovery,” Holcomb said in a statement. “The coronavirus does not discriminate, and this further highlights the importance of wearing masks and social distancing.”

-- Lydia Gerike

Indiana sees jump in jobless claims, but state reporting error accounts for much of it

A Department of Workforce Development error inflated the number of first-time unemployment applications reported to the federal government for the past week, a state official said Thursday. 

The federal data released Thursday showed that 28,864 Indiana workers applied for unemployment for the first time in the week that ended Oct. 10. However, at least 10,000 of those claims were actually people continuing to receive benefits, said Josh Richardson, chief of staff for Department of Workforce Development Commissioner Fred Payne. 

More claims could be recounted as state officials fix the reporting error that arose from a requirement to check whether federal benefits recipients are now eligible for state benefits at the start of the month, he said. 

"It's very possible that there's some natural bump," Richardson said. 

The problem should be fixed in next week's report, according to the Department of Workforce Development. 

Read the full story.

-- Binghui Huang

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