Most of Indiana will remain in Stage 4.5 of the Back On Track Indiana plan through at least July 31, Governor Eric J. Holcomb announced Thursday afternoon.
Elkhart County will remain in Stage 4 as it has for the last two weeks. Local governments may impose more restrictive guidelines, Holcomb says.
Holcomb first announced Stage 4.5 just before the Fourth of July holiday weekend when the state was expected implement Stage 5.
Holcomb released this statement about his decision:
“As we actively track our health indicators and monitor the data, we continue to see the need to maintain our current levels found on Indiana’s Back On Track roadmap,” Gov. Holcomb said. “By exercising caution, good hygiene, wearing masks and engaging in proper physical distancing, we can all help slow the spread of COVID-19 so when prudent, we can further reopen our state for business.”
Governor Holcomb and stat health officials have used data to drive decisions since the state’s first case of the novel coronavirus in early March.
The state will continue to monitor and respond to these four guiding principles:
- The number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients statewide has decreased for 14 days
- The state retains its surge capacity for critical care beds and ventilators
- The state retains its ability to test all Hoosiers who are COVID-19 symptomatic as well as health care workers, first responders, and frontline employees
- Health officials have systems in place to contact all individuals who test positive for COVID-19 and expand contact tracing
Starting July 23, events with more than 250 attendees must submit a safety plan to their local health department for approval. Other social gatherings and meetings remain limited to no more than 250 people.
Governor Holcomb signed an executive order implementing these changes to the Back on Track Indiana roadmap. The executive order can be found here.
The Associated Press reported today that Indiana is falling behind in COVID-19 testing sites and processing test. Dr. Kristina Box said Wednesday that the company had 35 testing sites open, with results averaging 59 hours. Box blames a national increase in demand for test processing.