TDH reports 1,908 new coronavirus cases, 44 new deaths in Tennessee

Weekly positivity rate increasing, hospitalizations surging in Shelby County

Shelby County Health Dept. COVID-19 Joint Task Force give live update, Oct. 27

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The COVID-19 cases count has increased by 1,908 cases in Tennessee with 44 additional deaths reported Tuesday afternoon.

Tennessee Department of Health says there has been a total of 251,774 cases statewide with more than 238,00 cases confirmed and 13,650 cases considered probable.

Tennessee’s coronavirus death toll has reached 3,207. But TDH says there are 222,348 inactive/recovered cases across the state.

Data from TDH also shows the state’s positivity rate is at 11.43% as of Tuesday.

Shelby County health officials reported 301 new cases of COVID-19 Tuesday and three additional deaths.

The county currently has 2,952 active cases. Another 33,275 cases have since been deemed inactive or recovered.

So far, 36,793 people in Shelby County have contracted the virus and 566 have died.

Shelby County's weekly COVID-19 test positivity rate shows an increase each week over the last month.
Shelby County's weekly COVID-19 test positivity rate shows an increase each week over the last month. (Source: SCHD)

The county’s weekly positivity rate has increased each week over the last month. Most recent data available from the Shelby County Health Department shows a weekly positivity rate of 7.2 percent.

Shelby County, like much of the U.S., is seeing another spike in cases in recent weeks, sometimes referred to as the fall wave. As a result, 90 percent of the Mid-South’s regional acute care hospital capacity is currently utilized and 89 percent of ICU capacity is utilized. Increases in hospitalization have prompted warnings from Mid-South health officials.

On Monday Shelby County Health Department Director Dr. Alisa Haushalter told the County Commission over the last few weeks we’ve averaged about 220-300 new COVID-19 cases a day. From Sunday to Monday that number was 404.

Hospitalization capacity in Shelby County as of Oct. 27, 2020
Hospitalization capacity in Shelby County as of Oct. 27, 2020 (Source: SCHD)

Dr. Steve Threlkeld, infectious disease specialist at Baptist Memorial Hospital-Memphis, says hospitalizations aren’t the highest of the pandemic, but they are surging.

There are ongoing COVID-19 clusters at 18 long-term care facilities, many of which have experienced previous clusters. Hundreds of residents and staff members have contracted the virus since the pandemic arrived in the Mid-South.

Shelby County long-term care facility active COVID-19 clusters as of Oct. 27, 2020.
Shelby County long-term care facility active COVID-19 clusters as of Oct. 27, 2020. (Source: SCHD)

Tennessee reported 2,279 new cases and 32 new deaths Monday. Data from the Tennessee Department of Health shows 27,473 active cases statewide.

At the start of the pandemic, briefings were daily but eventually decreased to weekly with the drop in cases. Beginning this week, however, the health department is increasing their briefings again to twice a week.

Watch an update from county leaders and health officials at noon in a livestream here on our website and our Facebook page.

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