Another local person has died and dozens more have been infected as cases of COVID-19 continue to climb rapidly in Miami County and across the state.
Monday’s update from the Indiana State Department of Health put the total of Miami County deaths caused by the novel coronavirus at 10. That represented an increase of one from the previous week.
Indiana officials added four new deaths to the county’s total last week.
The noon on Monday update also put the county on the cusp of 1,200 cases of the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. With the addition of 27 new cases from Sunday to Monday, the county total was 1,199. The new total represented a jump of more than 200 cases in a single week.
By Tuesday the total was 1,230.
The increasingly rapid addition of cases means the county could be on track to see more restrictions put in place in accordance with Gov. Eric Holcomb’s guidance to stem the spread of the virus during the new surge.
Miami County, for roughly a month, has sat at orange on the state’s “county metrics map.” The designation on the four-color map represents a level of high to medium spread throughout the community. The only level designated on the map above the orange counties, is red.
For weeks, the county has been adding new cases well above the state threshold rate of 200 weekly cases per 100,000 residents to be considered a red county, but the seven-day average positivity for all tests administered has remained below the 15-percent mark that officials consider indicative of high rates of spread.
That combination has kept the county in the orange.
Monday’s update though showed that the county may soon cross the mark into red.
The state website which represents the tracked data notes that positivity rates lag by one week in order to ensure that good data is used in making the designations.
The average rate, as of Monday’s noon update put the seven-day average for all tests at 8.67 percent.
The reported all-tests average for Monday’s batch of tests was 14.5 percent. On Sunday it was 15.2 percent and on Thursday it was 10 percent. The average rate, according to a chart that tracks the county numbers on the state website has been climbing steadily since early October.
A move to red status on the state map would mean that the Indiana Department of Health will convene local public health officials, local health care providers, elected officials, school leaders and other key stakeholders to discuss actions that will be taken, according to the state’s website.
It would also mean that:
Social gatherings of any kind, indoors or outside, will be limited to 25 people.
Special, seasonal or commercial events are not advised to be held. A special, seasonal or commercial event for which more than 25 people are requested to be in attendance must submit a plan to the local health department at least seven days in advance of the event and receive approval before proceeding. College and professional sports events are included. (This requirement is effective Nov. 22.)
Vulnerable populations should remain isolated. Social and holiday gathering participation is not advised.
All business capacity must adhere to strict social distancing guidelines; curbside pickup is preferred.
Local officials may consider limiting hours for the operation of bars, nightclubs and restaurants.
Attendance at winter indoor K-12 extracurricular and co-curricular activities, including IHSAA sports, is limited to participants, support personnel and parents/guardians.
All non-competing and non-performing participants, support personnel and attendees are required to wear face coverings at all times
Community recreational sports leagues and tournaments may continue with participants, required personnel, and parents/guardians only.
Senior center activities are suspended.
Hospitals, long-term care and other congregate settings may impose visitation limits and reduce the number of people in common areas and break rooms at one time.