By Randy Arrington
LURAY, Sept. 7 — On Sunday, the Virginia Department of Health reported the 27th death due to COVID-19 in Page County. The news came five days after Page reported its 26th death.
Only three pandemic deaths have been reported in the county since June 2 — one on Aug. 9, and two in the past five days.
Despite the recent fatalities, Page County’s new case count remains low. Only one new case of COVID-19 has been reported in Page County in the past three days, and only five over the past week. With 101 tests for the coronavirus administered to county residents over the past week, that gives Page County a seven-day positivity rate of 4.9 percent. As of Monday, Virginia’s positivity rate stood at 7.7 percent.
The Lord Fairfax Health District has seen 26 new cases of COVID-19 since Friday, and 67 in the past week. The majority of those new cases are still being seen in Frederick County, with 12 cases reported since Friday and 23 in the last week. Winchester added another 22 in the last seven days.
Shenandoah County has reported nine new cases in the past week, while Warren County had a net of four new cases (two other cases were taken off the county’s total on Friday). Clarke County has seen four news cases in a week.
The district has seen 14 hospitalizations due to COVID-19 in September, with five in Frederick County, three in Clarke County and two each in Shenandoah and Page counties, and Winchester. Warren County has not seen a new hospitalization due to the pandemic since July 20.
Page and Shenandoah counties have both reported two COVID-19 deaths in September.
A cumulative breakdown by jurisdiction of the health district’s 2,872 reported cases, 254 hospitalizations and 98 deaths is as follows (hospitalizations – deaths):
- 787 — Frederick County (61-11)
- 778 — Shenandoah County (82-50)
- 461 — City of Winchester (36-4)
- 395 — Warren County (22-6)
- 366 — Page County (41-27)
- 85 — Clarke County (12-0)
The City of Harrisonburg continues to report dozens of new cases of COVID-19 each day, with 58 new cases reported on Monday. In the past 12 days since Aug. 27, Harrisonburg has reported a total of 632 new cases of the coronavirus. However, the city has only seen five new hospitalizations due to COVID-19 during that time, and one new death reported on Aug. 31.
James Madison University reported a total of 772 cases of the coronavirus just nine days after classes began. Of those, 650 cases were listed as active — but many students self-reported, and some remained at home and are not residing in Harrisonburg.
The university has sent on-campus students home, and starting tomorrow nearly all classes will be online. JMU officials have stated that they will be making a decision on whether or not to bring students back on Sept. 25, with classes resuming no earlier than Oct. 5.
Rockingham County has seen 88 new cases surface in the past week (averaging a dozen a day), with only two new hospitalizations in the last seven days and no new deaths related to the pandemic.
Statewide, 645 new cases of COVID-19 were reported on Monday. That’s the lowest daily figure for Virginia since July 9. However, it follows 1,199 new cases reported on Sunday — the highest figure in the past eight days. The daily count of new cases has typically see-sawed between 800 to 1,200 cases (with a few exceptions) since early July.
Virginia is also seeing declines in hospitalizations and deaths over the past week. New hospitalizations, which peaked this week at 63 on Thursday, came in at 32 on Sunday and 21 Monday.
The Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association reported Monday that 1,061 people are currently hospitalized that have either been confirmed to have COVID-19 or are awaiting test results. That figure is down 69 since Thursday.
Among those hospitalized, 249 are in intensive care, according to VHHA — down 17 since Wednesday. Currently, there are 119 COVID-19 patients statewide on ventilators, down 15 since Wednesday.
Since the pandemic hit Virginia, VHHA reports that 15,742 people who have been confirmed to have COVID-19 and were hospitalized, have been discharged.
VDH reported six more deaths related to the COVID-19 pandemic on Monday. That followed only one new death reported on Sunday. By comparison, on Tuesday and Wednesday (Sept. 1-2), the state reported a two-day total of 61 COVID-19 deaths.
Virginia has seen 2,684 people die from the novel coronavirus since March 14.