Rappahannock case count up by 14 in the past week
The number of Virginians hospitalized with COVID-19 is now essentially the same as it was a year ago, when no vaccine was available for the virus, as cases continue to rise across the state and in Rappahannock County.
The Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association reported Friday that 1,265 people were being treated in hospitals statewide with suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19, and the number was as high as 1,289 on Thursday. On Aug. 20 last year, 1,266 patients were hospitalized.
Although that is still well below the January peak of over 3,200 patients, hospitalizations had fallen as low as 195 on July 5. The number of hospitalizations is up 75% in the past two weeks.
The Virginia Health Department changed its COVID-19 dashboards this week and is no longer providing the number of hospitalizations by health district.
The number of cases continues to rise across Virginia and is now 160% above the levels of a year ago statewide, which has fared somewhat better than the rest of the state in the recent surge.
As of Friday the state's seven-day average of new cases is 2,321.9, the highest since Feb. 18. The number of cases reported Friday, 2,792, was the most in any day since Feb. 13.
Close to home
In Rappahannock County, there have been 14 new cases since last Friday, Aug. 13, bringing the total number of local COVID-19 infections to 397 since the start of the pandemic in March 2020. Two residents have died and 15 have been hospitalized.
On Thursday, a Rappahannock County High School student tested positive for COVID-19, and the school system confirmed that a high school staff member is "very ill" due to an infection contracted before the school year began. Full details here.
In its weekly report Friday, the University of Virginia's Biocomplexity Institute says 33 of the state's 35 health districts are experiencing a surge in cases. The only health districts not in surge are Fairfax County and Alexandria. The institute continues to project that the number of new cases by mid-September could rival the January peak of over 6,000 a day.
Seven-day case averages are higher in all four of the state's health regions outside of the Northern Virginia DC suburbs: the Eastern (680), Central (470), Southwest (443) and Northwest (371).
InsideNoVa analysis of health department data available through Aug. 13 shows that only about 5.3% of the over 13,000 new cases reported that week were among fully vaccinated individuals. Updated data was not available for this week.
The pace of vaccinations statewide remains at about 14,600 a day, according to the state's vaccination dashboard. It was as low as 11,000 a day in early July but had been as high as 86,000 a day in late March.
Over 9.76 million vaccine doses have been administered to Virginians, with 66.6% of the adult population and 55.6% of the total population now fully vaccinated.
The state's average positivity rate for diagnostic tests has increased to just below the 10% level, at which point experts believe the spread of the virus is out of control and not all cases are being captured.
Statewide, 48 deaths related to COVID-19 were reported this week, the most since the week ending June 18. Deaths tend to be a lagging indicator and can often take several weeks to verify and report; throughout the pandemic, deaths have begun to increase three to four weeks after an increase in cases.
A new case of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, or MIS-C, was reported this week in Prince William County.
LATEST COVID-19 DATA
New Cases/Deaths (Seven days ending Friday, Aug. 20)
Rappahannock County: 14 new cases in past week
Statewide: 16,253 new cases (up from 13,162 prior week), 48 new deaths (up from 41 prior week)
Statewide Testing: 126,662 PCR diagnostic test results (up from 118,981 prior week)
Rappahannock County: 397 cases (since March 2020), 2 deaths
Statewide: 734,079 cases, 11,647 deaths
Statewide Testing: 8.32 million PCR diagnostic tests (11.18 million when including antibody and antigen tests)
Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) cases: 81; 1 new case reported this week statewide.
*Provided by Virginia Department of Health. The health department's COVID-19 data is updated each morning (Monday through Friday) by 10 a.m. and includes reports by local health agencies before 5 p.m. the previous day.
Statewide Hospital Data (as of Friday, Aug. 20)
Hospitalizations: 1,265 (up from 1,029 on Aug. 13)
Peak Hospitalizations: 3,209 reached Jan. 13
Patients in ICU: 344 (up from 261 on Aug. 13)
Patients Discharged: 59,668 (917 this week)
*Provided by Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association
For updated national and international COVID-19 data, visit the Johns Hopkins University coronavirus dashboard.
Editor's note: The Rappahannock News is providing regular COVID-19 updates every week — and developments as they happen. For daily reports, visit the Virginia Department of Health COVID-19 dashboard.