The Georgia Department of Public Health reported that the Northeast Health District added 353 new cases of COVID-19 in the week ending on Feb. 15, based on the Department’s electronic tracking system.
That number of added cases on a week earlier on Feb. 8 had been 400.
Both Oconee County and Clarke County reported a decrease in cases.
In addition, the Department of Public Health reported five new confirmed deaths from COVID-19 in the Northeast Health District in its report on Wednesday, including two in Clarke County.
The Department of Public Health reported three confirmed deaths from the disease in the Northeast Health District on Wednesday of last week.
Clarke County has reported at least one confirmed death from COVID-19 in each of the last five weeks.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to rate the Transmission Rate for COVID-19 in Oconee and Clarke counties as High.
Although the Department of Public Health is releasing a report only weekly, it is gathering data on a daily basis, and the weekly report includes a data file containing case counts each day, ending on a Wednesday.
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The Department of Public Health switched to weekly, rather than daily, case counts in April of last year in part because of a concern that its counts under-represent the actual number of cases.
At-home test results are not included in the electronic reporting system.
The average number of added cases per day in the last seven days ending on Feb. 15 in the Northeast Health District was 50.4, down from 57.1 last week.
Oconee County added 16 cases in the seven days ending on Wednesday. The county added 26 cases in the seven days ending on Feb. 8.
Clarke County added 70 new cases in the seven days ending on Feb. 15. It had added 84 cases in the week ending on Feb. 8.
The unstandardized rolling average of added cases in Oconee County on Feb. 15 was 2.0. It had been 3.7 on Feb. 8.
The unstandardized seven-day rolling average of added cases in Clarke County on Feb. 15 was 10.6. It had been 12.7 on Feb. 8.
The Clarke County confirmed deaths from COVID-19 in the last week were of a 59-year-old female without a chronic condition and of a 62-year-old male, also without a chronic condition.
The deaths this past week bring to 245 the total number of deaths in Clarke County from COVID-19 since the outbreak of the pandemic in February of 2020.
The three other reported confirmed deaths from COVID-19 in the Northeast Health District, according to the Daily Status Report on Feb. 15, were in Walton County.
The Northeast Health District now has recorded 1,739 confirmed deaths from COVID-19 since February of 2020, or 328.0 deaths per 100,000 population.
Even with the nine confirmed COVID-19 deaths over the last five weeks, Clarke County has the lowest rate of deaths per 100,000 population in the Northeast Health District (190.4), followed by Oconee County (102 confirmed deaths, or 244.0 per 100,000 population).
The Northeast Health District reported 195 “probable” deaths from COVID-19 on Wednesday, the same as last week.
The Georgia Department of Public Health’s 10-county Northeast Health District includes Oconee and Clarke counties. The other counties are Barrow, Elbert, Greene, Jackson, Madison, Morgan, Oglethorpe, and Walton.
The Georgia Department of Public Health is no longer reporting data on COVID-19 hospitalizations at area hospitals, and the data available from the U.S. Health and Human Services are two weeks old when released.
The Centers for Disease Control and prevention rates the Transmission Rate of COVID-19 in Oconee County and Clarke County as High, based on total number of new cases per 100,000 population in the last seven days and the percentage of Nucleic Acid Amplification Tests that are positive during the last seven days, ending on Thursday.
Both counties had been rated at High in terms of Rate of Transmission last week as well.
The only county in the Department of Public Health Northeast Health District that does not have a High Transmission rate is Oglethorpe, with a Moderate Rate.
The CDC scale is High, Substantial, Moderate, or Low.