EVANSVILLE — Vanderburgh County recorded another 146 COVID-19 cases Saturday just a day after setting a new one-day record for new cases.

Vanderburgh County now has accumulated a total of 9,091 COVID-19 cases. The numbers, which have been growing since the first known case emerged on March 19, can be found on the Indiana State Department of Health's statewide dashboard of cases.

There were no new coronavirus-related deaths reported Saturday for Vanderburgh, Gibson, Warrick, Spencer, Perry and Posey.

More than 23 percent of Vanderburgh County’s cases – 2,110 of 9,091 — have been reported just in the past 15 days. Nearly half of the hospital ICU beds in Southwestern Indiana were occupied by COVID-19 patients as of Saturday, according to the ISDH.

The seven-day rate of individuals testing positive in Vanderburgh County on Saturday was 21% for the period of Nov. 8-14.

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Deaconess and St. Vincent hospital officials spoke Thursday of strains on their facilities and employees as cases rise and flu season looms. They once again reminded the community to practice social distancing, to avoid gatherings, wear face-coverings and exercise good hand hygiene.

"Any time we run above 87% capacity, additional measures are required to maintain normal operations. We are running in the 90% and above range frequently now," Deaconess Health System President Dr. James Porter wrote in an email. "And unless public health measures are followed to reduce the spread of COVID-19, there is no reason to expect this to change.

"The upcoming holidays, and threat of influenza spreading, represent future risk of the situation worsening."

The state of Indiana reported 6,983 new cases Saturday and 40 new deaths, bringing the statewide total to 289,183 positive cases since March 6. There have now been 4,992 total deaths, according to the ISDH. On Saturday, Indiana saw a record high 8,451 new cases, smashing the previous recorded high of 6,654.

Warrick County on Saturday added 42 new cases for a total of 3,044; Posey County added 21 for a total of 1,152; and Gibson County added 67 for a total of 1,690.

ISDH updates its color-coded county-by-county rating system for quantifying risk weekly on Wednesdays. Spencer County has been placed in red, or high alert territory, along with Perry County. The other area counties remained in the orange.

The system is intended in part as a guide for school leaders on whether to keep students in classrooms. ISDH assigns counties scores based on the number of new cases per 100,000 residents and the percentage of positive COVID-19 tests.

Each county is designated a color, given the average of those numbers. The colors range from blue — least community spread — to yellow, orange and red for greater spread.

The weekly cases per 100,000 residents numbers updated for the week with all of the area counties increasing but one: Vanderburgh has 495 per 100,000 residents, Warrick 520, Posey 440, Gibson jumped from 522 to 790, Spencer has 581 and Perry decreased to 479.

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In Southwestern Indiana, 49.5% of hospital ICU beds were reported to be occupied by COVID-19 patients. ISDH's dashboard shows the multi-county District 10, of which Vanderburgh and Warrick are the most populous, now dropped to 17.6% of ICU beds available. Statewide, 43% of ICU beds are being used for COVID-19 while 22.4% are available.

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A total of 64,737 individuals in Vanderburgh County have been tested for COVID-19 since March 11, with 125,041 total tests administered. The number of cases in the 20-29 age group remains the largest demographic of COVID-19 cases, with 21.0%

The school-age demographic of children age 0-19 was at 13.7% of all cases locally slightly lower than the state's proportion of cases in the 0-19 age bracket, 13.8%.

The ISDH dashboard offers four separate figures for positivity rates. The "unique individuals" positivity rate for Vanderburgh Saturday was 14% cumulatively and the seven-day rate, covering Nov. 8-14, was 21%.

The "all tests" positivity rate was 5.1% cumulatively and 6.9% over the same seven-day period. The latter number has been fluctuating by several tenths of a percentage point over the past few days.

The ISDH updates its online dashboard of COVID-19 data daily, including deaths, as it tracks the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.
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