Indiana’s virus death rate still up as hospitalizations dip

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Posted at 4:19 PM, Dec 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-19 20:49:37-05

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana’s daily rate of COVID-19 deaths has continued growing even as coronavirus-related hospitalizations have dropped to its lowest level in a month.

The Indiana Department of Health’s daily update on Saturday added 73 coronavirus deaths that occurred over the past several days to the state’s toll. Those boosted the state’s seven-day rolling average of COVID-19 deaths to 77 per day after that average was in the low 40s in mid-November and below 10 a day during July.

Indiana’s coronavirus hospitalizations and new confirmed infections have slowed in recent weeks following steep increases that began in September and raised worries among health officials about hospitals becoming overwhelmed.

Indiana hospitals had 2,932 coronavirus patients as of Friday, the first day below the 3,000-patient mark since Nov. 16, according to the state health department’s online dashboard. The COVID-19 hospitalizations have declined about 15% since peaking Nov. 30 but remain nearly four times higher than in September.

The newly recorded deaths raised Indiana’s toll to 7,338, including victims with both confirmed and presumed infections.