COVID weekly Sept. 13

New COVID-19 cases have leveled off over the last week after several consecutive weeks of increases. What hasn’t changed, however, is that most new COVID-19 activity is occurring among the state’s unvaccinated population.

INDIANAPOLIS — COVID-19 cases remain high at about 4,000 new positive Hoosiers per day, but that has flattened over the last two weeks, halting weeks of rising activity.

Still, total hospitalization and death numbers continue to rise, showing that Indiana isn’t out of the heart of the delta-driven spike in activity.

That applied locally, too, where the four-county area logged another four deaths from the virus.

Statewide, Indiana averaged about 3,925 cases per day over the past six days, nearly the same as 3,985 cases per day the week before. Both of those are down a little from 4,212 cases per day two weeks back.

The Labor Day holiday might have been to blame for the slight drop before, but this week’s numbers are taken from testing days occurring after the holiday weeekend, suggesting that maybe Indiana’s COVID-19 case surge has started to level.

Statewide positivity hasn’t changed much, hanging at 8.8% as compared to 8.9% a week back, so a high number of people coming in for testing are still leaving positive.

Indiana hospitalization have risen again, but those have slowed too, increasing to 2,634 total patients in treatment. That’s a 4.6% compared to a week ago, down from a 13.4% increase that week and 19.6% increase the week prior.

Average daily deaths, however, are sharply up to 36.5 per day over the last six days, as compared to 17.6 per day the week before. That number, however, is likely inflated due to a backlog in reporting occurring after the holiday weekend, although even with some pent-up deaths reported that figure is still higher.

The rising deaths also hit the four-county area, where the region saw four deaths in three counties over the past week.

Noble County logged its 99th death overall occurring on Sept. 1. The patient was a person 80 years old or older, according to state demographic data.

To date in Noble County, one death has been among a resident in the 40s, six were people in their 50s, nine people in their 60s, 24 people in their 70s and 59 at 80 or older.

DeKalb County logged two new deaths, taking that county to 91 deaths all time.

The two new deaths occurred on Sept. 3 and Sept. 6 and were both patients aged 80-plus.

To date, DeKalb County has had two deaths among patients in their 40s, three deaths among people in their 50s, nine deaths among people in their 60s, 23 deaths of patients in their 70s and 54 deaths at the 80-plus age group.

The fourth death of the week occurred in LaGrange County, its 74th all time, happening on Sept. 5. The death was a person in their 50s, according to state data.

It’s the first death in LaGrange County since Aug. 1.

To date, LaGrange County has had three deaths among people in their 50s, 10 deaths among people in their 60s, 21 among people in their 70s and 40 people who were 80 or older.

Steuben County was the only county without a new death this week, holding at 64 all time.

The situation across the state hasn’t changed much in the last two months — the highly infectious delta variant of COVID-19 remains the dominant strain circulating the state and numbers remain at their highest levels outside of the all-time record peak hit between November 2020 and January 2021.

The ongoing surge in cases hasn’t caused any major changes in the state’s vaccine uptake, with first-timer shot numbers decreasing over the last week.

Indiana remains at about 55% of its eligible population age 12 and older fully vaccinated.

Meanwhile, the virus primarily continues to pick off the approximately half of the state’s total population that hasn’t taken, or can’t take, vaccines.

Last week, more than 80% of new cases diagnosed were among the state’s unvaccinated population, with the remainder being breakthrough cases among people who got shots.

When it comes to hospitalizations and deaths, however, more than 90% of those ended up with the more serious cases are the state’s unvaccinated.

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