The Alabama Department of Public Health reported an additional 1,626 coronavirus cases on Thursday after several days when new cases increased by less than 1,000 per day.
Through July 7, at least 45,263 Alabamians had contracted the coronavirus, but in the 30 days since, 48,139 more Alabamians have tested positive for the virus and more deaths have followed. The state has averaged 1,605 cases per day in the last 30 days. Thursday’s increase of 1,626 exceeded that average.
The state now has 93,402 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and that number is sure to rise as schools begin to reopen next week and children and teachers begin intermingling for the first time in 117 days.
Through July 7, at least 1,007 Alabamians died from COVID-19. In the last 30 days, another 647 Alabamians have died. That is an average of nearly 22 deaths per day. The Department of Public Health confirmed an additional 15 COVID-19 deaths on Thursday. The state’s death toll now stands at 1,654.
As of Wednesday, at least 1,575 people who have tested positive for COVID-19 were being treated in hospitals statewide. Many hospitals have recently been or are currently near ICU bed capacity. Making matters worse for health care workers, 5,575 Alabama health care workers have tested positive for the coronavirus.
At least 1,576 of those health care worker cases have come in just the last 30 days.
By Thursday, the state reported 736,594 tests, and 93,402 have been positive. That is nearly a 12.7 percent rate of positive tests since March. Public health officials say anything over 5 percent is bad and an indicator that there are many more people out there with the coronavirus that are not being detected.
In the last two weeks, though, at least 17.5 percent of tests have come back positive, based on 14-day averages of daily case and test increases. In the last week, that positivity rate has been nearly 17 percent.
At least 37,923 Alabamians are presumed to have recovered.
Some states, including New York, are asking that visitors from Alabama quarantine themselves for 14 days upon arrival. GOP Senate candidate Tommy Tuberville was recently criticized in The Washington Post for defying Washington D.C.’s 14-day quarantine request for visitors from Alabama.
Not all of the news is bad. The seven and 14-day averages of daily case increases in the state have both been dropping since peaking around July 25. The cases, while dropping, are still well above what they were prior to July 13, and the positivity rate remains high.
The state remains under a “safer-at-home” order through the end of August, issued by Gov. Kay Ivey and State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris. If you do not have to leave your home, then do not leave your home. You are safer there.
If you are going to be around other people not in your household, you are required to wear a mask or cloth face covering. This includes school children returning to classes this month.
Remember to always socially distance. Stay six feet away from other people as much as possible. Don’t shake hands or hug people not actually living in your household.
If someone in your household is sick, isolate them from the rest of the family. If you or someone in your family have any sort of symptoms, get tested for the coronavirus. Remember to wash your hands frequently.