‘Fear of another spike’: Holcomb, officials concerned over Indiana’s COVID-19 trends

The governor was joined by other state officials, including State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box and Chief Medical Officer for the Family and Social Services Administration Dr. Daniel Rusyniak.

Posted: Aug 12, 2020 4:54 PM
Updated: Aug 12, 2020 5:23 PM

INDIANAPOLIS (WXIN) — Governor Holcomb opened Wednesday’s press conference discussing school funding by announcing his recommendation that the State Board of Education “move the counting day back to December” to ensure schools get 100% funding even if they’re starting online-only.

The governor was joined by other state officials, including State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box and Chief Medical Officer for the Family and Social Services Administration (FSSA) Dr. Daniel Rusyniak.

On Wednesday, Indiana reported 671 new COVID-19 cases and 15 additional deaths, bringing the statewide totals to 76,522 and 2,878 respectively.

Dr. Box shared her concerns that Indiana’s hospitalization numbers continued to trend upwards and positivity rates continue to climb.

“These steps we take in the coming days and weeks are going to be critical to reversing these trends, especially as we get close to our Labor Day Weekend,” Box said. “We have seen all of these metrics increase significantly a couple of weeks after July 4 when many people gathered and didn’t practice social distancing. My fear is that we will see another spike after Labor Day if people continue to ignore our guidance."

Dr. Box again stressed the importance of following guidelines provided by health officials to stem the COVID-19 outbreak.

“If we want to change the narrative, we all have to do our part. So please, keep wearing your mask. Stay home if you’re sick. Don’t send your kids to school if they have symptoms or are waiting for test results,” Box explained.

Hoosiers cooperating with contact tracers is of utmost importance Dr. Box added.

“Please, if you get a call or a text from a contact tracer regarding yourself or your child, answer the call,” she said. “Tell them if you were at a wedding, or a party, or even a school athletic practice. Let them know who else was in close proximity. This information helps us protect other people from COVID in our schools, and throughout our communities.”

She also announced that the State Department of Health is working on a dashboard for the ISDH website of COVID-19 school case data. Dr. Box said the health department will need access to the most up-to-date rosters for all schools from the Department of Education – data that still needs to be put together.

Dr. Dan Rusyniak announced the long-term care facility data dashboard was released Wednesday as part of the state’s COVID-19 website. Dr. Rusyniak said the data will lag by one week.

“If a staff member works at three facilities, it will be counted for each facility but only once in the aggregate data,” he said. Rusyniak added that the long-term dashboard will update weekly, on Wednesdays.

AARP Indiana State Director Sarah Waddle issued the following statement about the long-term care facility dashboard announcement:

“It has taken some time to arrive at this point, but we’re pleased that Hoosiers finally have access to this data. Transparency has never been more critical, and this dashboard can be an important tool for both Hoosier families deciding on care for their loved ones, and for local leaders deciding on the deployment of critical resources like PPE and testing.

“As we have seen since the state began releasing the preliminary numbers last month, there are more COVID-19 related deaths linked to long-term care facilities than previously reported. While these increases can be attributed to including earlier data from more facilities, the fact remains that long-term care residents and staff now make up more than 60 percent of COVID-19 related deaths in Indiana.

"By releasing the facility-level data, we’re finally getting an accurate picture of what has been happening in facilities during this health crisis. We will continue to monitor the numbers closely and work with the state to keep older Hoosiers safe.”

During last week’s update, Holcomb said the state’s moratorium on evictions, foreclosures and utility disconnects will be allowed to expire on Friday, Aug. 14.

A settlement facilitation program is being developed and specifics will come “in the next few weeks,” according to Holcomb’s general counsel Joseph Heerens.

Gov. Holcomb said last week Indiana is adding $15 million to the existing $25 million rental assistance program for a total of $40 million.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 112626

Reported Deaths: 3520
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion20832759
Lake10292318
Elkhart6415109
St. Joseph6156102
Allen6029200
Hamilton4724109
Vanderburgh344530
Hendricks2673122
Monroe247436
Tippecanoe226913
Johnson2268123
Clark215056
Porter207845
Cass19329
Delaware188261
Vigo178123
Madison159575
LaPorte137739
Floyd131461
Howard128563
Kosciusko120217
Warrick119936
Bartholomew115357
Marshall98924
Dubois95418
Boone95146
Hancock91143
Grant89133
Noble89132
Henry77024
Wayne74414
Jackson7409
Morgan70038
Shelby66529
Daviess64427
Dearborn63228
LaGrange63111
Clinton59212
Harrison56024
Putnam53710
Lawrence50528
Montgomery50521
Knox5019
Gibson4854
White48114
DeKalb45611
Decatur45439
Miami4263
Fayette41813
Greene41835
Jasper3862
Steuben3707
Scott35610
Sullivan33012
Jennings31212
Posey3060
Franklin29925
Clay2935
Orange28524
Ripley2838
Carroll27013
Wabash2618
Washington2611
Starke2537
Whitley2526
Wells2482
Adams2453
Jefferson2443
Fulton2342
Huntington2223
Tipton21722
Spencer2153
Perry21413
Randolph2087
Jay1730
Newton17111
Owen1651
Martin1640
Rush1524
Pike1401
Vermillion1260
Fountain1182
Pulaski1151
Blackford1133
Crawford1030
Brown1023
Parke941
Benton880
Union770
Ohio767
Switzerland700
Warren391
Unassigned0225

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 145850

Reported Deaths: 4635
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin26242603
Cuyahoga17196644
Hamilton12850309
Montgomery7583152
Lucas7187358
Butler5727102
Summit5172249
Marion307247
Mahoning3002279
Warren294748
Stark2771168
Pickaway263444
Lorain227786
Delaware216620
Fairfield203850
Columbiana192180
Licking187562
Trumbull1852131
Clark175938
Wood173772
Clermont165520
Lake158649
Medina143939
Allen138869
Miami138049
Greene137632
Portage109466
Mercer107717
Tuscarawas91620
Erie91244
Wayne90866
Ross86123
Richland80819
Madison78712
Darke76839
Belmont71227
Geauga70547
Hancock67410
Ashtabula65148
Athens6292
Lawrence61618
Shelby5909
Auglaize5709
Putnam55823
Sandusky55520
Huron5337
Union5002
Scioto4746
Ottawa46630
Seneca45314
Preble42213
Muskingum3802
Holmes3777
Jefferson3284
Logan3013
Henry30012
Champaign2943
Perry2889
Defiance28710
Clinton28213
Brown2812
Knox28015
Morrow2522
Washington25123
Hardin25013
Fulton2371
Jackson2344
Coshocton23111
Crawford2276
Fayette2266
Ashland2244
Highland2203
Wyandot20212
Williams2013
Gallia18612
Meigs17210
Pike1670
Hocking1619
Guernsey1578
Carroll1517
Adams1234
Van Wert1143
Monroe10918
Paulding1050
Harrison622
Morgan470
Vinton453
Noble270
Unassigned00
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