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Holsworth: June 24, 2020, Virginia Covid-19 Update

Editor’s note: Bearing Drift is grateful to Dr. Bob Holsworth for permission to share his daily Virginia coronavirus updates. For more, follow him on Facebook [1].


1. Hospitalizations: Mixed Report

The Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association’s (VHHA) daily reports have shown a modest tick upward in the number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in the past two days, moving from 848 to 886.

At the same time, the severity numbers declined. The number of COVID-19 patients in ICUs decreased from 240 to 235 and the number of patients on ventilators decreased from 132 to 107, the lowest number since VHHA began its reporting.

2. More Cases in RVA than NOVA for First Time

Confirmed cases increased by 529 and 520 since my previous report. Last week, the corresponding numbers were 445 and 444. The test positivity numbers have been basically steady the past two days at 6.2%.

Once again , declining cases in the NOVA communities is the most positive sign. Yesterday, there were 156 new confirmed cases in my NOVA community list. There were 158 confirmed cases in the RVA communities, the first time that I’ve not seen NOVA leading in terms of absolute numbers. Inside RVA, the Chesterfield Health District continues to have the largest case increase.

I’m not suggesting that there is a large surge in RVA. But what I am suggesting is that, at least in terms of cases, RVA is actually holding relatively steady while NOVA declines.

A similar trend is also evident in the Hampton Roads communities. For most of the pandemic, Hampton Roads has had far fewer cases than NOVA and RVA. A few weeks ago, the numbers were down to 20-50 cases per day. Lately, we’re seeing 40-85 cases per day. Perhaps not a huge worry, but certainly worth watching.

Overall, I am still cautiously optimistic because I continue to think that hospitalizations and test positivity are the most important indicators. But seeing what is happening in other states should have us remaining vigilant, especially as the Commonwealth moves into Phase 3 next week.