Autumn coronavirus spike continues

Saturday, November 7, 2020
Over the course of the last nine weeks, the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 has been up and down. Recently, however, the positivity rate has been over 14 percent, a sign that there are a lot more cases that are not being found.
T-G Graph by Terence Corrigan

Tennessee is deep in the Red Zone for its number of active cases of COVID-19.

Public health officials, including the White House Coronavirus Task Force, consider states with a rate of 100 cases per 100,000 to be in the Red Zone, the most severe situation.

Tennessee over the seven days from Oct. 30 through Nov. 5 averaged 25,604 active cases per day. The resulting rate per 100,000 was just over 376.

Statewide the number of people being admitted to the hospital in Tennessee every seven days for the last nine weeks.
T-G Graphic by Terence Corrigan

Tennessee has since Oct. 23 (14 days), experienced three record days for the number of deaths from the coronavirus: Oct. 23, 65 deaths; Oct. 30, 78 deaths and Nov. 3, 75 deaths. From Oct. 30 to Nov. 5 there were 246 deaths from the pandemic.

In 14 days (from Oct. 23 to Nov. 5), 744 Tennesseans were newly hospitalized for the coronavirus. On Nov. 4, 1,502 Tennesseans were hospitalized with the viral infection.

Statewide, the spike in the number of cases continued. In the most recent 14 days (Oct. 23 through Nov. 5) there were 33,864 new cases reported in Tennessee. In the previous 14 days there were 28,460 cases reported.

Bedford County

Bedford County has not escaped the late autumn spike in cases. Starting Oct. 9, the number of cases per seven day periods has mushroomed. In the past four seven-day periods (from Oct. 9 through Nov. 5) 429 residents of Bedford County tested positive for the coronavirus. In the seven day period prior, 216 residents of Bedford County tested positive. That’s an increase of 98.6 percent.

The state’s report lists the number of school age children (ages 5-18) that test positive each day but it does report if they attend local schools. In the last seven days the number of school age children that tested positive in Bedford County was 25 — 10 of those were on one day, Wednesday, Nov. 4. From Oct. 21 through Nov. 5, testing revealed 52 school age children tested positive in Bedford County.

The positivity rate (percent of positives of the total number of tests) has been very high in recent days, indicating that there have not been nearly enough tests to accurately gauge the number of cases. Public health officials say that 10 percent or less is needed, with 5 percent or less preferred. Bedford County’s positivity rate in the last 14 days has been 14.27 percent.