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Howard County loses 'blue' ranking

Only three Indiana counties remain 'blue' in state metric system

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After holding onto its "blue" score in Indiana's weekly COVID-19 metric system aimed at tracking community spread of the virus last week, Howard County moved to "yellow" this week. 

Now, only three counties maintain a "blue" score, the best possible. Those counties are Benton County, Owen County, and Brown County. Last week, eight counties, including Howard, were "blue" for the overall score, which is determined by number new cases of COVID-19 and the county's seven-day all tests positivity rate. 

Scores are given in four colors, which represent increasingly worsening numbers: blue, yellow, orange, and red. 

In the category of weekly cases per 100,000 residents, Indiana scored orange, meaning there were 100 to 199 new cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 residents. Howard County had 149 cases per 100,000 residents. No counties scored blue, and only four counties scored yellow. The rest were orange and red. 

In the category of seven day all-tests positivity rate, Howard County scored yellow, meaning the rate was between 5 and 9.9 percent. Howard County's rate was 6.89 percent. Fifteen counties scored blue, with the majority scoring yellow. Three counties scored "red": Fayette, Dearborn, and Ohio. Those three counties were also the only three counties to receive an overall score of red as well. 

Daily update

Today, the Indiana State Department of Health reported 2,587 new cases of the virus and 33 new deaths. 

Now, 169,112 Hoosiers have tested positive for the virus, and 3,991 have died. An additional 236 have died who were presumed to have the virus but had no positive test on record.  

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Of the new cases reported, 24 were in Howard County. There were no new local deaths. Now, 1,725 residents have tested positive for the virus, and 66 have died. 

Currently, 22.3 percent of the state's 2,106 ICU beds are in use for COVID patients, and 29 percent are available. Of the state's 2,831 ventilators, 5.9 percent are in use for COVID patients, and 77.8 percent are available. 

As of yesterday, 1,679 Hoosiers were hospitalized for the virus. 

Indiana ranks ninth in the nation for the number of new cases of the virus in the past seven days. 

Trend data

According to the Regesntrief Institute, which has been tracking COVID-19 data trends in Indiana, the state is trending upward in three of five tracked categories: positive tests, emergency room visits, and hospital admissions. Deaths were trending downward, while trend data for ICU admissions was inconclusive. 

Howard County was trending downward in all categories except emergency room visits. ER visits locally were trending upward. 

According to the institute, 76.3 percent of Hoosiers who have tested positive for the virus have recovered.