Indiana leaders pin slowing COVID-19 spread to vaccine

Indiana faces a longer stretch of COVID-19 illnesses and deaths while the governor and top state health official on Wednesday pinned improvement on personal responsibility and the looming first arrival of vaccines rather than reinstating more statewide precautions.

Posted: Dec 3, 2020 9:50 AM

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana faces a longer stretch of COVID-19 illnesses and deaths while the governor and top state health official on Wednesday pinned improvement on personal responsibility and the looming first arrival of vaccines rather than reinstating more statewide precautions.

Nearly all of Indiana remained in the greatest-risk categories for coronavirus spread in a state health department update that also showed a new high for average daily COVID-19 deaths for the state.

Health officials across the state are worried about hospitals being overwhelmed by the growing number of severely ill patients and a possible new surge tied to Thanksgiving gatherings in the past week.

“We know that we’re kind of bracing for the next few weeks to unfold and those lagging indicators that come off of holidays when people are traveling, when people are getting together with folks that they haven’t been around,” Gov. Eric Holcomb said during his weekly coronavirus briefing.

Indiana hospitals were treating more than 3,400 COVID-19 patients as of Tuesday — about a 350% increase since late September when the state’s steep increase in hospitalizations and deaths began.

Sixteen of the state’s 92 counties were listed in the most dangerous red category in the health department’s weekly tracking map. All but one other county was assigned the next riskiest orange rating.

Those overall county ratings have not improved over the past three weeks as Indiana’s number of COVID-19 deaths and hospitalizations have continued increases to surpass the state’s peaks during the initial coronavirus surge during the spring.

State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box said it was possible that Indiana could receive enough of the initial vaccines nearing federal authorization to cover front-line health care workers and nursing home residents by the end of December, followed by wider distribution next year.

“I hope it gives every Hoosiers hope that we will get to the other side of this pandemic,” Box said.

Health officials on Wednesday added 91 confirmed recent COVID-19 deaths and 19 deaths of people with probable coronavirus infections to the statewide toll. The confirmed deaths for November now total 1,477 — surpassing the previous monthly peak during April by nearly 400 and about double October’s total.

The state’s seven-day rolling average of COVID-19 deaths has reached 60 per day after that average was below 10 a day during July.

Indiana’s current surge in COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations and deaths began in September about the time Holcomb lifted nearly all business and crowd size restrictions before reinstating some crowd limits in mid-November while continuing the statewide face mask order.

Holcomb, who completed a two-week quarantine Tuesday after a COVID-19 exposure, said Wednesday no states have found a “magic wand” of actions to stop the coronavirus spread and that individuals needed to accept the short-term inconvenience of precautions such as mask wearing and limiting contact with others.

“We’ll continue to appeal and make sure that folks have the information as COVID-19 continues to ravage our communities and families and make sure folks are equipped to make the right, safe decisions,” Holcomb said.

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Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 587049

Reported Deaths: 9287
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion810691296
Lake44121665
Allen31797541
Hamilton28178303
St. Joseph26684369
Elkhart24057340
Vanderburgh18519213
Tippecanoe17305121
Johnson14398284
Porter14342159
Hendricks13793241
Madison10509212
Vigo10432171
Clark10151129
Monroe9029108
Delaware8782129
LaPorte8721153
Kosciusko784677
Howard7834137
Warrick636790
Hancock633297
Bartholomew624294
Floyd6098105
Wayne5903156
Grant5799109
Dubois541670
Boone531467
Morgan512388
Marshall492484
Henry491164
Cass469060
Noble458757
Dearborn454544
Jackson413145
Shelby401178
Lawrence379475
Clinton363639
Gibson355056
DeKalb336363
Montgomery333851
Harrison326042
Knox325439
Miami308243
Steuben304940
Adams294435
Whitley292325
Wabash291645
Ripley290845
Putnam282447
Huntington281257
Jasper280733
White265738
Daviess260772
Jefferson248538
Fayette241348
Decatur241282
Greene232460
Posey230026
Wells228547
LaGrange223461
Clay216432
Scott216437
Randolph207540
Jennings191335
Sullivan188531
Spencer179917
Fountain178625
Washington175018
Starke170741
Jay162021
Fulton158829
Owen157837
Carroll151315
Orange150533
Rush148118
Perry145327
Vermillion144333
Franklin142533
Parke12788
Tipton127332
Pike113125
Blackford107022
Pulaski94637
Newton89020
Brown85530
Benton84110
Crawford7479
Martin69213
Warren6537
Switzerland6175
Union6063
Ohio4647
Unassigned0374

COVID-19 Important links and resources

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