Holsworth: August 21, 2020, Virginia Covid-19 Updatd

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. Hospitalizations Moderately Down, Deaths Moderately Up

In my last report on Tuesday, there were 1253 COVID-19 patients in hospitals, today the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association reported 1233. Last week at this time there were 1299 COVID-19 patients in hospitals.

The number of patients in ICUs and on ventilators have remained relatively steady with a slight downward trend. One week ago, there were 268 patients in ICUs, today 260; there were 150 patients on ventilators 7 days ago, today 142.

There were 66 reported deaths in the last 7 days, up moderately from the 53 deaths reported in the previous week.

2. Confirmed Cases Moderately Declining

There were 737, 863, and 978 confirmed cases the last 3 days. The number of confirmed cases is also moderately declining as this is the first week in over a month where we haven’t seen at least one day with more than 1,000 confirmed cases and there is a clear reduction in the 7-day average.

The 7-day positivity rate has also continued to move downward, declining to 6.6%.

The surge that had been seen in Hampton Roads has now moderated. Cases in the other 2 major metros – NOVA and RVA – occasionally increase on a day-to-day basis, but have not given evidence of a surge.

3. Can the Trends Continue

The moderate declines in hospitalizations, test positivity and cases are all encouraging. The question is how will this look as most colleges and universities and several K-12 systems reopen.

Two Richmond-based universities — University of Richmond and VCU — already reported cases within the first week of classes and several colleges outside Virginia returned to virtual-only classes after reporting outbreaks among the student body.

It may be possible for Virginia to get its test positivity rate below 5% in the near future. But this is not inevitable – we almost did so a few months ago only to see a spike throughout the state. Let’s see if the progress can hold this time around.

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