The 10-county Northeast Health District added only 42 new cases of COVID-19 in the last seven days ending on Friday, down from 134 cases added last week.
The number of cases added is fewer than the 63 added at the bottom of the last wave of cases in July of last year.
The District added 17 confirmed deaths from the disease, the same as the week before. Deaths have remained high even as the number of cases has fallen dramatically.
One of the confirmed deaths was in Oconee County and four were in Clarke County.
Included in the Clarke County deaths was that of a four-year-old, the youngest victim of the virus recorded in the county.
The average number of added cases per day in the last seven days in the Northeast Health District was 6.7, compared with 19.1 in the seven days ending on March 11.
Oconee County added just eight cases in the week ending on Friday, down from the 15 new cases in week ending on March 11.
Clarke County added 23 new cases in the seven days ending on Friday, compared with 41 new cases in the week ending on March 11.
The seven-day rolling average of added cases in Oconee County on Friday per 100,000 population was 2.1, and it was 2.1 in Clarke County as well.
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On March 11, those rolling averages had been 3.1 in Oconee County and 2.6 in Clarke County.
The unstandardized rolling average of added cases in Oconee County on Friday was 0.9 compared with 1.3 on Friday of last week.
The last time the unstandardized rolling average in Oconee County had been less than 1.0 was on July 6 of last year.
In Clarke County, the unstandardized seven-day rolling average of added cases on Friday was 2.7, compared with 3.3 on Friday of last week.
The last time the unstandardized seven-day rolling average had fallen below 3.0 in Clarke County was on July 4 of last year.
The Delta variant of COVID-19 began to spread in late June of 2021 before being replaced by the Omicron variant at the end of the year.
The Oconee County confirmed COVID-19 death was of a 68-year-old male without a chronic condition.
The Clarke County confirmed deaths were of the four-year-old, a female without a known chronic condition, a 69-year-old female without a chronic condition, an 83-year-old male without a chronic condition, and an 85-year-old female without a chronic condition.
The youngest recorded confirmed death in Clarke County had been of a 31-year-old male. The youngest in Oconee County was of a 31-year-old male.
Oconee County now has 94 confirmed deaths from COVID-19, or 224.9 per 100,000 population, and Clarke County has 213 deaths, or 165.5 per 100,000 population.
The Northeast Health District now has recorded 1,540 confirmed deaths from COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic, or 290.5 per 100,000 population.
Clarke County continues to have the lowest number of confirmed COVID-19 deaths per population in the 10-county Northeast Health District, and Oconee County has the second lowest.
Elbert County, with 81 deaths, has the highest number per population, with 412.5 confirmed deaths from COVID-19 per 100,000 population.
The remaining 12 confirmed COVID-19 deaths in the Northeast Health District in the last seven days were in Barrow (1), Greene (2), Jackson (3), Madison (1), Oglethorpe (2), and Walton (3) counties.
The Northeast Health District had 144 “probable” deaths from COVID-19 on Friday, up from 143 a week ago.
The added “probable” death was in Elbert County.
No details are given on “probable” deaths.
Oconee County Schools
Oconee County Schools did not add any new cases of COVID-19 in the last week, and the number of cases recorded since the beginning of the school year on Aug. 4 is 694.
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A group of parents continues to file an open records request each week for reported cases, and Oconee County Schools responded on Thursday that no new cases had been added since Thursday of last week.
The parents are reporting the data released to them as a result of the open records requests on the Safety First Facebook page, but they also have released the data to me for my own analysis.
Oconee County Schools releases to the public only the number of Active Cases in the schools at the end of the class week. The data from the previous week are removed when the new data are reported.
In its report on Friday, Oconee County Schools reported no Active COVID-19 Cases, the same as the week before.
University, Hospital Reports
The University of Georgia on Wednesday, in its COVID-19 Health and Exposure Updates, reported 12 positive COVID-19 tests, up from10 in the previous week, based on an updated count.
The report on Wednesday covered the period of March 7 to 13.
The University reported that 95 walk-in tests were performed on individuals by the University Health Center in the week ending on March 13. That number had been 471 a week earlier.
None of the 95 tests was positive. The positivity rate for the walk-in tests performed in the week ending on March 6 was 0.2 percent.
The Georgia Hospital Association and the Georgia Emergency Management Agency reported on Friday that the number of COVID-19 patients at area hospitals was 26, down from 36 on March 11.
The number of ICU beds in use was 63, up from 54 a week earlier, and the number of adult ventilators in use was 40, up from 33 a week earlier.
The listed number of available ICU beds at area hospitals is 70.
The number of COVID patients at area hospitals is the lowest it has been since July 23 of last year.