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State health department reports 1,629 new COVID-19 cases, 19 new deaths

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Posted at 12:03 PM, Oct 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-18 12:14:49-04

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana State Department of Health on Sunday reported 1,629 new cases of COVID-19 and 19 new deaths. It is the 12th consecutive day with more than 1,000 new cases reported in Indiana.

Since the pandemic began, there have been 147,582 positive cases in Indiana with 3,704 deaths. An additional 233 probable COVID-19 deaths have also been reported. The state health department said probable deaths are those a physician listed COVID-19 as a contributing cause based on X-rays, scans and other clinical symptoms but for which no positive test is on record.

A total of 1,387 Hoosiers are in the hospital with the novel coronavirus, the state health department reported.

Marion County continues to lead the state with 24,410 cases and 780 deaths reported. Other counties that have seen the largest number of deaths from COVID-19 include Lake County with 350, Allen County with 221, St. Joseph County with 154, Elkhart and Hendricks counties with 130, Johnson County with 127 and Hamilton County with 113.

There have been more than 2.51 million COVID-19 tests administered to more than 1.55 million individuals with a 9.5 percent cumulative positivity rate among unique individuals. Indiana's seven-day positivity rate among unique individuals through Oct. 10 is 11.4 percent.

The state health department said 36.3 percent of ICU beds and 79.6 percent of ventilators are available.

Any Hoosier seeking COVID-testing can obtain it through one of the state-sponsored OptumServe sites, regardless of whether they are at high risk or have symptoms. To find testing locations around the state, visit www.coronavirus.in.gov and click on the COVID-19 testing information link. More than 200 locations are available around the state.


FULL CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE FROM WRTV


Human coronaviruses most commonly spread from an infected person to others through: Respiratory droplets released into the air by coughing and sneezing; close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands; touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes before washing your hands; rarely, fecal contamination.

The best way to protect yourself from any respiratory illness, including the flu, is to: Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap & water are not available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. Avoid close contact (within six feet) with people who are sick. Stay home when you are sick. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

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