State reports big rise in COVID-19 deaths after reporting change

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The Indiana State Department of Health on Tuesday said the number of positive cases for COVID-19 in the state has risen to 12,097, following the emergence of 411 more cases.

It also reported 61 new deaths, the largest number of deaths reported by the department in a daily report since the beginning of the pandemic.

The daily count is the lowest since 291 new cases were reported on April 14.

New reported cases were down from 476 on Monday, 569 on Sunday, 487 on Saturday and 613 on Friday.

The department said reported cases were lower than expected in the latest report because of a technology glitch.

The state said Tuesday that the cumulative death toll in the state rose to 630, up from 569 the previous day—an increase of 61.

The department said Monday that death numbers would begin increasing because it would begin reporting presumptive positive deaths in its totals. Presumptive positive deaths are not necessarily verified by tests, but includes deaths in which a doctor listed COVID-19 as an underlying cause.

New positive cases, deaths and tests have occurred over a range of dates but were reported to the department in the previous day.

The department reported the state’s first case on March 6.

The state reported that 67,264 people have been tested so far, up from 64,639 in Monday’s report—an increase of 2,625 tests.

The ISDH said the test numbers reflect only those tests reported to the department and the numbers should not be characterized as a comprehensive total.

Marion County reported 4,176 cumulative cases—up from 4,052 the previous day, an increase of 124 cases.

The state reported 206 cumulative deaths in Marion County, up from 192 in Monday’s report. The state said 19,706 people have been tested in the county.

As for surrounding counties, Hamilton had 615 positive cases; Johnson 451; Hendricks 511; Boone 161; Hancock 149; Madison 346; Morgan 124; and Shelby 120.

Every Indiana county has at least one case.

Elsewhere in Indiana, these counties had at least 120 cases as of Tuesday: Lake (1,227), St. Joseph (442), Allen (336), Porter (183), Clark (181), Elkhart (179), Decatur (171), Floyd (142), Bartholomew (140) and LaPorte (140).

The department said 47.4% of the state’s intensive care unit beds were still available. About 23% are being used by COVID-19 patients.

The department also said 77.1% of the state’s ventilators were available.

The health department is providing case updates daily at noon based on results received through 11:59 p.m. the previous day.

Health officials say Indiana has far more coronavirus cases—possibly thousands more—than those indicated by the number of tests.

As of Tuesday morning, 788,920 cases had been reported in the United States, with 42,458 deaths, according to a running tally maintained by health researchers at Johns Hopkins University & Medicine. More than 73,500 people have recovered.

More than 2.5 million cases have been reported globally, with 171,810 deaths. More than 659,700 people have recovered.

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