By Randy Arrington
LURAY, Jan. 14 — The Virginia Department of Health reported 4,795 new cases of COVID-19 across the state on Friday, marking a distinct decrease from the 5,294 cases reported on Thursday. In fact, after posting five straight days with more than 5,000 new cases of the coronavirus reported Jan. 6-10, Virginia has only seen one day in the last five surpass 5,000 cases.
The state’s seven-day positivity rate has also been decreasing for the last five consecutive days, after rising slowly and steadily since late October. It currently stands at 15.2 percent.
Page County, however, continues to see a steady flow of new cases of COVID-19, with 45 reported over the last three days. The county saw 15 cases reported Wednesday, 19 on Thursday and 11 more on Friday.
According to ZIP code data provided by VDH, the new cases of COVID-19 reported over the last three days in Page County surfaced in the following areas (ZIP code data totals do not always match the county’s daily reports – see details about this on the VDH ZIP code page link above):
• 24 cases — Luray area (22835);
• 15 cases — Stanley area (22851);
• 7 cases — Shenandoah area (22849);
• 1 case — Rilleyville area (22650).
Page County reported a new hospitalization on Thursday, but no new deaths have occurred since the county reported its 35th pandemic fatality on Tuesday.
Page County’s positivity rate has been fluctuating around 20 percent for more than three weeks. Currently, both the seven-day and 14-day positivity rates for the county stand at 21.9 percent, according to Daily Locality Metrics data provided on the VDH website. On Nov. 16, 2020, the county’s seven-day positivity rate stood at 3.4 percent and grew steadily to a high of 22.5 percent on Dec. 31. The rate has ranged from 19.3 percent to 22.5 percent since Dec. 22.
The Lord Fairfax Health District reported 164 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, 153 cases on Thursday and 181 on Wednesday. The district’s daily case count has only dropped below 100 four times since Dec. 5 and has exceeded 200 three times.
Over the last three days, Frederick County reported 189 new cases of COVID-19, while Shenandoah County reported 116, Winchester had 62, Warren County saw 58, Page County reported 45 and Clarke County had 28. During that time, the health district has seen six new hospitalizations and six new deaths. Both Frederick and Shenandoah reported two deaths, while Winchester and Clarke County each had one.
A cumulative breakdown by jurisdiction of the health district’s 12,733 reported cases, 557 hospitalizations and 213 deaths is as follows (hospitalizations – deaths):
- 4,661 — Frederick County (155-37)
- 2,756 — Shenandoah County (150-80)
- 1,903 — City of Winchester (81-18)
- 1,633 — Warren County (71-36)
- 1,289 — Page County (78-35)
- 491 — Clarke County (22-7)
Harrisonburg has reported 103 new cases of COVID-19 over the last three days, along with three hospitalizations and two deaths. Rockingham County has reported 173 new cases of the virus during that time, with eight hospitalizations and eight deaths.
With 415 new hospitalizations reported over the last three days, statewide hospitalizations for COVID-19 are at 3,147, according to the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association. That marks a decline of 62 from Wednesday’s record-high of 3,209.
Among those patients, 580 are being treated in intensive care units — down seven from Wednesday’s record-high of 587. Among those, 362 are currently on ventilators — down four since yesterday, but the same as Wednesday.
Across Virginia, 37 percent of all ventilators are in use, and the state’s ICU bed occupancy is currently 83 percent.
As of Friday morning, 237,855 people in Virginia had been vaccinated with at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, among the 943,400 doses (including Moderna and Pfizer vaccines) that have been distributed to facilities and agencies across the state. A total of 30,475 people in Virginia have been fully vaccinated.
Here’s a breakdown of vaccine doses administered and those who have been fully vaccinated (two doses) across the Lord Fairfax Health District as of Friday’s report:
• 3,357 doses administered, 784 fully vaccinated — City of Winchester;
• 2,760 doses administered, 653 fully vaccinated — Frederick County;
• 1,956 doses administered, 246 fully vaccinated — Shenandoah County;
• 1,181 doses administered, 192 fully vaccinated — Warren County;
• 795 doses administered, 80 fully vaccinated — Clarke County;
• 576 doses administered, 93 fully vaccinated — Page County.
The state health department has reported 179 deaths related to COVID-19 over the last three days. Adding another 84 deaths reported on Tuesday, the last four days have been among the deadliest of the entire pandemic in Virginia. A total of 5,656 people statewide have died from COVID-19 since March 14 — 836 since Christmas.