The Department of Public Health added 202 new COVID-19 cases in the Northeast Health District on Monday, and the Georgia Hospital Association reported that area hospitals added 29 new COVID-19 patients.
The Georgia Hospital Association (GHA) and the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) reported that the number of COVID-19 patients at Region E hospitals reached 173, the largest number ever reported going back to May 8, when those data were first made public. The previous high was 152 on Dec. 8 and then 143 on Aug. 4 and 5.
Region E is centered in Clarke County and consists of the 10 counties in the Northeast Health District plus Franklin and Hart counties.
The Georgia Hospital Association reported that the number of ICU beds in use (67) decreased by seven from the day before, and that the number of adult ventilators in use (28) was the same as the day before.
The Department of Public Health Daily Status Report reported one death from COVID-19--of an 18-year-old Madison County male without a known chronic condition.
The death brings to 16 the number attributed to the disease in the county and to 371 the number attributed to the disease in the Northeast Health District.
The seven-day rolling average of added deaths attributed to the disease based on the official death figures from the Department of Public Health dropped to 1.4 on Monday from 1.6 on Sunday.
The Department of Community Health, in its Long-Term Care Facility Report on Monday, also listed two deaths at long-term care facilities in the Northeast Health District. One of those was at The Oaks–Athens Skilled Nursing Home in Clarke County, the first at the facility. The other was at Park Place Nursing Facility in Walton County, the 24th at that home.
The Department of Public Health Daily Status Report listed 193 cases based on molecular tests and nine cases identified via antigen tests. The seven-day rolling average of added cases based on a combination of these two tests was 318.4 on Monday, down from 329.4 on Sunday.
Oconee County added 12 cases based on the molecular tests and no cases based on the antigen tests. Clarke County added 24 cases based on molecular tests and an additional case based on the rapid antigen tests.
The seven-day rolling average of added cases based on a combination of these two tests was 15.6 in Oconee County on Monday, down from 17.0 on Sunday, and 65.6 in Clarke County, down from 68.3 on Sunday.
The Department of Community Health also reported 10 new cases of COVID-19 among residents of the Northeast Health District’s long-term care facilities. One of these was at Legacy Health and Rehabilitation nursing home in Greene County, and the other nine were at Great Oaks personal care home in Walton County.
In addition, the Department of Community Health reported eight cases of COVID-19 among staff at long-term care facilities in the Northeast Health District. One of these was at The Oaks–Athens Skilled Nursing in Clarke County, and the other were at facilities in Greene, Oglethorpe and Walton counties.
I asked a spokesperson from Piedmont Athens Regional–the largest hospital in the 12-county Region E--how it was accommodating the increase in COVID-19 cases.
John Manasso, manager of Public Relations for Piedmont Healthcare in Atlanta, did not answer the question, saying instead “Here is a statement you can use:
“As one of the largest healthcare providers in Georgia that serves communities representing 70 percent of the state’s population, Piedmont’s percentage of COVID-19 patients has remained fairly consistent relative to the state’s number of hospitalized patients throughout the pandemic.
“Trends indicate that about 9 percent of all COVID cases result in hospitalizations, and so as cases increase, Piedmont’s numbers are no different from any other system in Georgia.
“Throughout the pandemic, we have been in constant communication with the governor’s office, which has helped to provide us with vital staffing and supplies as we have faced the same challenges that every system across the country has faced.”
“For the time being, we are encouraged by our experience in treating COVID patients, with improved pharmaceuticals and protocols allowing us to make significant progress and achieve better patient outcomes. Our staff, though stressed and tested in previously unimaginable ways, is more committed and resilient than ever.
“Until COVID vaccines are widely available to the public, which remains several months away, it remains critical that we continue to mask up, wash our hands, maintain social distancing practices, and stay diligent in our fight against COVID.”
Across the state, the Daily Status Report added 3,302 confirmed COVID-19 cases based on molecular tests and 562 cases based on antigen tests. The seven-day rolling average of added cases based on a combination of the results of the two tests decreased to 5,901.1 on Monday from 6,134.9 on Sunday.
The state added 13 deaths in the Monday Daily Status Report, and the seven-day rolling average of added deaths dropped to 31.0 from 34.4 on Sunday.
Nine of the deaths occurred in the last 14 days.
The Daily Status Report also listed 15 “probable deaths” from the disease.
Across the state, the Georgia Hospital Association (GHA) and the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) reported on Monday that the number of COVID-19 patients (2,962) increased from the day before, the number of ICU beds in use (2,476) decreased from the day before, and the number of adult ventilators in use (879) increased from the day before.
The number of COVID-19 patients is the highest it has been since Aug. 8.
The Department of Community Health listed 670 long-term care facilities in the state with COVID-19 among their residents and/or staff on Monday, up from 668 on Friday, when the Department issued its last report.
All of the charts below 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 Monday.
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 shows data for Oconee and Clarke counties only on the left and for District E of GEMA on the right. District E is made up of the 10 counties of the Northeast Health District plus Franklin and Hart counties.
Charts 4 and 5 show data for the entire state of Georgia.