The average number of new cases of COVID-19 per day has remained near or above 10 in Anderson County for more than a month.
That’s down from the peak average of about 20 new cases per day or more in late July. But it remains higher than the averages for March, when the pandemic began, and for April, May, June, and early July.
On Tuesday each week, Oak Ridge Today calculates the seven-day average of new COVID-19 cases per day in Anderson County for the previous week.
That seven-day average passed an average of 10 new cases per day in early to mid-July before peaking at 24.7 new cases per day in late July. The average then fell in August before hitting a plateau at about 10 in mid-August. It has remained there, or close to it, with one exception since then.
The general trend of the averages calculated by Oak Ridge Today appears to be roughly in line with the averages tracked by Coronavirus-19 Outbreak Response Experts (CORE-19) at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville.
Here are the seven-day averages calculated by Oak Ridge Today since late June:
- Week ending June 30—3.43 new cases per day
- Week ending July 7—5.86
- Week ending July 14—10.86
- Week ending July 21—15.4
- Week ending July 28—24.7
- Week ending August 4—18.6
- Week ending August 11—9.7
- Week ending August 18—11.4
- Week ending August 25—9
- Week ending September 1—5.4
- Week ending September 8—11.1
- Week ending September 15—12.14
- Week ending September 22—13.7
- Week ending September 29—10.3
- Week ending October 6—15.3
Since Tuesday, Anderson County has continued to report more than 10 new cases each day. Twenty new cases were reported on Wednesday, and 13 new cases were reported on both Thursday and Friday, according to the Tennessee Department of Health.
Like the county, Tennessee has had somewhat of a plateau starting in about mid-August. The average number of new cases per day in Tennessee has been near or above 1,000 for more than three months, peaking at more than 2,000 cases per day in mid- to late July. It fell after the July peak but then seemed to plateau in the range of around 1,350 to 1,550 new cases per day from about mid-August to mid- to late September.
Tennessee has been named a “red zone” for new coronavirus cases, according to WVLT-TV in Knoxville, citing a report from the White House Coronavirus Task Force. On Friday, the television station said Tennessee has had 14 new cases per 100,000 residents in the past week, and the state ranked 14th out of 51 in a national ranking of new cases per 100,000 people. North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Montana, and Utah were the top five.
It’s not clear what will happen in the winter, but there is some concern about the possibility of continued high or rising case counts nationwide as people spend more time indoors, where the risk of transmission appears to increase; travel for the holidays; possibly grow weary of public health measures; and receive conflicting messages from national, state, and local leaders.
Overall, the nation is headed in the wrong direction in terms of case counts. After falling from a summer peak, the number of cases is climbing again, and hospitalizations appear to be trending back up. CNN reported Friday that most states are seeing new cases trending up. On Thursday, Wisconsin, North Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming reported record-high case counts, and Missouri’s current hospitalizations were the highest ever, according to The COVID Tracking Project.
The national new case count on Friday, 57,542, was the highest since August 7, according to The COVID Tracking Project.
It’s a trend outside the United States as well. Globally, the World Health Organization announced a new daily record high in coronavirus cases on Friday, with more than 350,000 infections reported to the United Nations health agency, the Associated Press reported.
It’s not clear what steps are planned to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 as the county, state, and nation head into the colder winter months. Measures in place now to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 include testing, contact tracing, wearing masks, maintaining physical distances from people outside your home, washing your hands, and staying home when you are sick. But the implementation and practice of those measures can vary from location to location.
On Friday, the Tennessee Department of Health reported a total of 1,363 cases in Anderson County, with 13 deaths and 40 hospitalizations.
The last death due to COVID-19 in Anderson County was reported by the state on September 25. Five of the 13 deaths reported in the county occurred in September.
Eight new hospitalizations have been reported since September 9, meaning roughly 20 percent of the county’s hospitalizations have been in the past month or so.
The state reported 154 active COVID-19 cases in Anderson County on Friday and 1,196 inactive cases. Active cases are total cases minus inactive cases and deaths. The state can report a case as inactive when a patient is 14 days or more past the start of their illness or, in cases where they are asymptomatic, the date when they submitted a specimen for testing.
The percentage of new cases, compared to the number of new tests each day, continues to remain above 5 percent in the county. It was 6.1 percent on Friday—13 new cases out of 212 new tests. The number of new positive tests out of total new tests was 7.5 percent (16 new positives out of 212 new tests). The overall positive test rate for Anderson County is 5.3 percent, according to CORE-19.
The transmission rate in Anderson County is back over one. It was 1.08 on Friday, according to CORE-19. When the number is greater than one, the number of new infections will increase.
There have been a total 29,278 COVID-19 tests in Anderson County since the pandemic began March 20.
COVID-19 daily snapshot
Here were the COVID-19 statistics for Anderson County on Friday, October 9:
- Total cases—1,363
- New cases—13
- Active cases—154
- Inactive cases—1,196
- Total hospitalizations (current hospitalizations could be different)—40
- Total tests—29,278
- Daily rate of new cases to new tests—6.1 percent
- Hospitalization rate—2.9 percent
- Death rate—0.95 percent
- Transmission rate—1.08
Here are recent seven-day averages of daily rates of new cases compared to new tests:
- Week ending July 9—5.45 percent
- Week ending July 16—9.37
- Week ending July 23—9.6
- Week ending July 30—8.7
- Week ending August 6—5.5
- Week ending August 13—4.8
- Week ending August 20—5.7
- Week ending August 27—3.6
- Five-day average ending September 1—5.6
- Week ending September 8—5.63
- Week ending September 15—5.01
- Week ending September 22—6.77
- Week ending September 29—5.05
- Week ending October 6—7.3
State, county statistics
Here were the COVID-19 statistics for Tennessee on Friday, as reported by the Tennessee Department of Health:
- Total cases—211,030
- New cases—1,556
- Active cases—16,647
- Death rate—1.3 percent
- Current hospitalizations—1,023
- Daily positivity rate—6.04 percent
- Average patient age—40
The first case of COVID-19 was diagnosed in Tennessee on Wednesday, March 4. Since then, there have been more than 3.1 million COVID-19 tests in Tennessee.
The highest number of cases in the state is in Shelby County, which includes Memphis in West Tennessee. The case count there was 32,447 on Friday. There have been 529 deaths in Shelby County.
In Davidson County, 27,964 cases have been reported. In that county, 321 deaths have been reported. Davidson County includes Nashville in Middle Tennessee.
Other counties with case counts of more than 2,000 on Friday included:
- Knox (Knoxville area), with 10,540 cases, passing Hamilton County with an increase of more than 1,100 cases since September 26, and 82 deaths, up 7 deaths since late September;
- Hamilton (Chattanooga area), with 10,334 cases, up almost 1,000 cases since September 26, and 99 deaths, an increase of 5 deaths since late September;
- Rutherford (Nashville area), with 10,147 cases and 102 deaths;
- Williamson (Nashville area), with 5,910 cases and 44 deaths;
- Sumner (Nashville area), with 5,200 cases and 104 deaths;
- Wilson (Nashville area), with 3,931 cases and 52 deaths;
- Putnam (Cookeville area), with 3,714 cases and 50 deaths;
- Montgomery (Clarksville area), with 3,417 cases and 48 deaths;
- Madison (Jackson area, between Nashville and Memphis), with 3,326 cases and 74 deaths;
- Bradley (Cleveland area, near Chattanooga), with 3,186 cases and 19 deaths;
- Sevier (Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, Sevierville), with 2,871 cases and 19 deaths;
- Blount (Maryville area), with 2,815 cases and 28 deaths;
- Maury (Columbia area, south-southwest of Nashville), with 2,684 cases and 32 deaths;
- Washington (Johnson City area), with 2,623 cases and 39 deaths;
- Sullivan (Kingsport-Bristol area), with 2,581 cases and 35 deaths.
- Robertson (east of Clarksville), with 2,348 cases and 39 deaths; and
- Hamblen (Morristown area), with 2,134 cases and 38 deaths.
Here is COVID-19 case information about other counties besides Knox County that surround Anderson County:
- Loudon County has reported 1,389 cases, up more than 230 cases since September 26, and nine deaths, which is three more than in late September.
- Roane County has reported 1,025 cases, up 140 cases since September 26, with six deaths.
- Campbell County has reported 635 cases, up almost 200 cases since September 26, and four deaths.
- Union County has reported 444 cases with two deaths.
- Morgan County has reported 355 cases with four deaths.
- Scott County has reported 263 cases with three deaths.
COVID-19 is a new, contagious illness that can have respiratory symptoms and affect other parts of the body, and it can be deadly. It can cause a range of health issues that can last weeks or months, including fevers, body aches, fatigue, coughing, and breathing problems, among other reported symptoms. The long-term effects remain unknown.
It can be spread by respiratory droplets from coughing, sneezing, talking, and singing. There is also debate about whether it might be spread by airborne transmission.
The disease appears to be especially deadly to older patients, according to data from the Tennessee Department of Health. As of Friday, there had been at least 19 deaths among all age groups 21 years old and older, and 112 or more deaths starting with the 41-50 age group. The number of deaths continues to climb in older age groups. There have been between 272 and 930 deaths in the four oldest age groups: 51-60, 61-70, 71-80, and 81 and older.
The largest number of cases continues to be among patients who are 21 to 30 years old, followed by patients who are 31 to 40, and then patients who are 41 to 50.
While some people report no symptoms or mild symptoms, others become seriously ill from COVID-19, sometimes for weeks, and the effects can sometimes last for months. Others are admitted to the hospital, and some patients end up in intensive care and on ventilators.
To help prevent the virus from spreading, officials have repeatedly recommended that residents wear a face mask or covering when they are out of the house and around others, maintain a distance of at least six feet from other people when possible, and wash their hands frequently.
See the CORE-19 website here.
See previous story here.