The Department of Public Health listed four new Northeast Health District deaths attributed to COVID-19 with the release of the Daily Status Report on Thursday, bringing to 18 the number of deaths in the last week in the District and pushing the seven-day rolling average to 2.6.
Two of the deaths were in Barrow County, and the other two were in Oconee and Clarke counties.
The Oconee County death was of a 74-year-old female with no chronic condition, and the Clarke County death was of a 67-year-old male with a chronic condition.
The two Barrow County deaths were of a 72-year-old male and of a 90 plus-year-old male, both of whom had a chronic condition.
The seven-day rolling average of added deaths had been 2.0 on Wednesday.
The Daily Status Report listed 150 new confirmed COVID-19 cases on Thursday in the 10-county Northeast Health District, and the seven-day rolling average–which had been dropping–increased to 124.3 on Thursday from 115.0 on Wednesday.
Each of the counties in the District added cases, with Oconee County adding three and Clarke County adding 31.
The Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) listed four Critical Care Beds available at area hospitals as of noon on Thursday, down from nine on Tuesday and the first time that the number of Critical Care Beds available has fallen below five going back to Aug. 7.
GEMA, in its partnership with the Georgia Hospital Association, also listed 132 Confirmed COVID-19 Hospitalizations (also called COVID-19 Patients) in area hospitals on Thursday, up from 115 on Wednesday.
Ventilator Use increased to 33 on Thursday from 27 the day before.
The Department of Community Health Long-Term Care Facility listed no new cases or deaths at long-term care facilities in the Northeast Health District.
Virtual Town Hall Meeting
Michael Burnett, president and CEO of Piedmont Athens Regional, in a Virtual Town Hall Meeting on Thursday morning, said the pattern of COVID-19 cases at the hospital reflected the overall state pattern shown in Chart 5 below.
|Burnett In Virtual Town Hall Meeting 8/20/2020|
He said the demand at present is from rural areas south of the hospital in Athens, that patients are younger than was true earlier in the pandemic, and that new treatment procedures make it less likely that Critical Care Beds or ventilators will be needed or used.
“We’re not putting as many patients in ICU (intensive care units) or on ventilators as we did at first,” he said.
Testing remains a problem, he said, and the hospital does not have enough kits for out-patients, he said. “That is a ongoing issue,” he added.
Supplies are “more stable” that in the past, Burnett said, “so I feel like we’re good on that front as well.”
“We’ve had an incredible journey here,” Burnett said in summary. “We are still in the middle of it. I can’t tell you how proud I am of our staff and our employees.”
State Data On Cases
Across the state on Thursday, the Department of Public Health reported 2,812 new confirmed COVID-19 cases, and the seven-day rolling average increased to 2,640.6 from 2,620.9 on Wednesday.
That was the first increase in the rolling average since Aug. 10 and took place at a time of decreased testing.
The number of added molecular tests was 21,138 on Thursday up from 15,378 on Wednesday, but down from the day before, according to the Daily Status Report
The seven-day rolling average of added molecular tests is 22,032.14, the lowest figure since July 17.
The percent of molecular tests producing a positive verdict was 9.2 on Thursday, and the seven-day average was 9.4 percent. That figure has been relatively stable in recent weeks. The average was 9.4 over the last two weeks as well.
So while testing has dropped, the percentage of cases producing a positive outcome has been steady, necessarily resulting in a decrease in the number of positive cases reported.
Other State Data
The Daily Status Report on Thursday listed 61 new COVID-19 deaths statewide, and the seven-day rolling average of added deaths dropped to 53.6 on Thursday from 56.7 on Wednesday. The rolling average of added deaths has been decreasing since Aug. 16.
Thirty-nine of those added deaths occurred in the last 14 days.
The Department of Public Health eliminated at least six deaths previously recorded as attributable to COVID-19 from the data file with the release of the file on Thursday.
The Department of Community Health listed 625 long-term care facilities with more than 25 beds as having COVID-19 among their residents and/or staff on Thursday, up from 623 on Wednesday.
The state has 790 licensed long-term care facilities with 25 or more beds that are covered by the Long-Term Care Facility Report.
GEMA listed 2,506 Current Confirmed COVID-19 Hospitalizations with release of its Situation Report COVID-19 on Thursday, down from 2,573 on Wednesday, and 1,179 ventilators in use, down from 1,212 on Wednesday.
All of the charts below except Chart 4 are based on data from the Department of Public Health Daily Status Report and have been updated to include data from the release of that report at 2:50 p.m. on Thursday.
Charts 1 and 2 include data from the 10-county Northeast Health District of the Department of Public Health, which includes Oconee and Clarke counties.
Chart 3 presents data for Oconee and Clarke counties only.
Chart 4 is based on data gathered by the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) and the Georgia Hospital Association and presented by the Georgia Geospatial Information Office.
The data shown are for Region E of GEMA, which includes the 10 counties in the Department of Public Health Northeast Health District as well as Franklin and Hart counties.
Charts 5 and 6 show data for the entire state of Georgia.
Click on any of the charts to enlarge it.