INDIANAPOLIS — This is blog contains daily updates on COVID-19 information for Indiana. The Indiana State Department of Health gives daily updates at noon, while Gov. Eric Holcomb and other state officials provide more context every Wednesday at 2:30 p.m.
Sunday October 25
The Indiana State Department of Health reported 2,175 people have tested positive for COVID-19. The total number of Hoosiers who have tested positive for the virus climbed to 162,607 through Saturday.
Twelve people who died between Thursday and Saturday bring the state's number of confirmed deaths to 3,894.
Nearly 30 thousand new test results were added to the state's database over the weekend, and the seven-day positivity rate stands at 6.9 percent. Overall, since the pandemic began, the cumulative rate of positive tests is 5.8 percent.
Hospital capacity shows 32 percent of ICU beds available statewide, with 23 percent of beds currently used by COVID-19 patients. The state has 77 percent of its ventilators available. Less than 6 percent are currently in use by COVID-19 patients.
Saturday, October 24
The Indiana State Department of Health reported the second-highest daily total of new COVID-19 cases Saturday with 2,765 new Hoosiers diagnosed with the virus. That brings to 160,454 the total number of Indiana residents known to have the novel coronavirus.
Indiana's 7-day positivity rate has climbed to 13.1 percent.
With 24 additional deaths reported to ISDH that occurred between Oct. 20 and Friday, the state has now lost 3,882 to COVID-19.
Indiana has tested more than 1.6 million individuals at least once for COVID-19. That means at least one in five Hoosiers have been tested since the pandemic began.
Friday, October 23
The Indiana State Department of Health reports 2,519 new positive cases of COVID-19 27 more deaths from the virus.
That brings totals to 157,713 cases and 3,858 confirmed deaths throughout the state. There are an additional 234 presumed death from the virus.
Thursday, October 22
The Indiana State Department of Health reported 2,880 new coronavirus cases in the state, totaling more than 155,000.
Forty-two more Hoosiers have died from the virus. Since the start of the pandemic, 3,831 have died from COVID-19 in the state.
Indiana has a 7-day positivity rate of 69 percent of all tests.
Wednesday, October 21
State health officials reported the most newly reported COVID-19 cases this week: 1,766. ISDH also announced 15 new deaths between Oct. 16 and Oct. 20.
The state's 7-day positivity rate also rose to 6.9%, another .2% increase from the previous day's. In total, Indiana has had 152,396 positive cases and 3,790 deaths since the start of the pandemic.
The state has just over one-third of ICU beds available, with 18.8% of beds in use by COVID-19 patients. On Tuesday, there were 1,484 patients being treated for COVID-19 in hospitals across the state — the most Indiana has seen since early May.
Dr. Kristina Box provided an update during the daily briefing stating that she experienced mild symptoms but is feeling better. Dr. Box expressed other family members are still experiencing mild symptoms. Dr. Box admitted to letting her guard down in her social bubble and contracted the coronavirus from family, she urges people to be cautious.
The State Department of Health's plan will roll out in three phases.
The first people to receive the vaccine will be health care workers, followed by those most at risk. The workers included in the first phase include everyone employed in health care settings, from hospitals and long-term care facilities to pharmacies, dialysis, and emergency medical workers.
The determination of who is at-risk will be based on the latest evidence and research at the time and includes people age 65 and older and with other health problems that would put them at higher risk for COVID-19.
The first phase will use hospitals that are prepared to administer to health care workers, then expand to use local health departments and commercial pharmacies.
The second phase of vaccinations will include those who are at an elevated risk by their working or living circumstances. The goal of the second phase is to limit the spread of the virus.
People included in this phase are those in correctional facilities, group homes, shelters, and essential workers who are in situations where social distancing is not possible and transmission risk is high. That group encompasses professions such as police officers and firefighters, teachers, and those who work in food service, retail, utilities, public transit, warehouses, indoor construction, and public health.
Once the first two phases are complete and a vaccine is widely available, health officials will begin to administer it to the general public.
The state may also call on the Indiana National Guard to assist with the plan.
Long-term care facilities
With deaths and cases increasing, the state is working on increased steps to support long-term care facilities. That will include testing, screening employees, managing data, and hiring additional clinical staff to help train long-term care staff. Indiana will also be supplying more PPE gear for staff working with possibly infected residents at the facilities.
Since the start of the pandemic, 2,205 long-term care residents have died from COVID-19 in Indiana. That makes up 58 percent of the state's deaths from the virus.
The Indiana National Guard will be deployed to all long-term care facilities with positive cases beginning Nov. 1. Guard members will be assisting with testing, reporting results, screening employees, and infection control practices.
The state will also be asking for volunteers to join Indiana's health care reserve workforce.
The governor said there will not be trick-or-treating at the governor's residence this year to be safe.
Tuesday, October 20
The Indiana State Department of Health reported more than 1,500 new cases of COVID-19 in the state and an additional 48 deaths.
In total, more than 150,000 Hoosiers have contracted the virus and more than 3,700 have died from it.
The state's 7-day positivity rate is 6.7 percent, a .2 percent increase from Monday's rate.
Monday, October 19
The Indiana State Department of Health reported 1,589 new, confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state and 23 more deaths.
In total, Indiana has reported more than 149,000 cases of the virus and 3,727 deaths.
Indiana has a 6.5 percent positivity rate over a 7-day period on all cases.
To date, 1,564,722 unique individuals have been tested in Indiana. A total of 2,533,863 tests, including repeat tests for unique individuals, have been reported to the state Department of Health since Feb. 26.
On Monday, coronavirus cases worldwide surpassed 40 million cases.