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Sunday, May 16, 2021

COVID-19 update: Numbers rise slightly but then steady

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Marion County has seen a slight increase in most COVID-19 statistics, but officials aren’t alarmed because the numbers have steadied since and people are continuing to get vaccinated.

“We are not done yet,” Mayor Joe Hogsett said April 22 at a COVID-19 update. “We’re close, but we’re not done yet. I know it’s been an unbelievable year, but we must keep our guard up even as we make the effort to return.”

The numbers

The seven-day average for positivity rate in Marion County is up to 6%, according to data from the health department. The rate was closer to 2.5% in late March. The goal is to be below 5%.

The average for emergency room visits is up to 26 per day, compared to 15 at the beginning of the month. There have been 152 new cases per day, down from a peak of 202 earlier in April but still up from less than 100 in March.

Deaths have stayed mostly steady at 0.7 per day.

The spikes, which have mostly leveled off now, are likely a result of spring break activity, according to Marion County Public Health Department Director Dr. Virginia Caine.

Caine said preliminary data suggests the NCAA Tournament accounted for less than 1% of the most recent cases.

About 46% of cases in March were in people ages 20 to 39.

Vaccination rates

Almost a quarter (21%) of Marion County residents have been fully vaccinated, Caine said. That is the lowest of the doughnut counties in Central Indiana.

The highest vaccination rate (70%) by age group belongs to those 70 to 74 years old.

The vaccination rate for African Americans in Marion County is 13%, which is lower than white people at 23% and higher than Latinos at 8.5%.

Contact staff writer Tyler Fenwick at 317-762-7853. Follow him on Twitter @Ty_Fenwick.

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