By Randy Arrington
LURAY, April 18 — Page County has reported six new cases of COVID-19 in the last 48 hours, according to the latest report from the Virginia Department of Health.
While the county’s first case was reported on March 31, it took 11 days to reach a total of six cases. As of Saturday morning, Page County’s total COVID-19 cases stood at 13 — with three reported on Friday and three reported on Saturday.
The VDH updates its COVID-19 statistics each morning by 9 a.m. Those figures reflect data provided by hospitals, healthcare facilities and independent laboratories as of 5 p.m. the previous day.
Neither the VDH nor regional healthcare provider Valley Health will release any further information about those who have contracted COVID-19 in Page County due to privacy laws.
However, several officials with Valley Health have stated that they are taking a “systemwide approach” to dealing with this pandemic and any regional outbreaks.
“Individuals [in Page County] with suspected or confirmed COVID-19, who are sick enough to require hospitalization, will be brought to the [Winchester Medical Center] where we’ve established a High Intensity Respiratory Unit with all the resources needed to manage their care,” Carol Weare, public relations manager for Valley Health, stated earlier this week.
Health officials generally agree that about 80 percent of those who contract COVID-19 will not require hospitalization. However, with limited bed space and equipment, Valley Health officials have stated several times in recent weeks that Page Memorial Hospital will not keep COVID-19 patients.
“We have a whole system approach,” Dr. Barbara Walter, general surgeon and Vice President of Medical Affairs for Page Memorial Hospital, told Page Valley News several weeks ago. “We don’t staff [PMH] to care for critically ill patients. If they are seriously ill, [PMH] is probably isn’t the best place for them.
“For example, we are capable of getting someone on a ventilator [in Luray],” Dr. Walter continued. “Our goal then would be to get them transferred to Winchester.”
The Lord Fairfax Health District reported 19 new cases Saturday morning to bring the total to 188 — broken down as follows (new cases overnight):
- 81 — Frederick County (5)
- 39 — Shenandoah County (6)
- 25 — City of Winchester (3)
- 24 — Warren County (2)
- 13 — Page County (3)
- 6 — Clarke County (0)
Clarke County has not seen a new case since Tuesday.
The City of Harrisonburg reported 19 new cases overnight, after reporting 95 new cases Friday morning. The number of new COVID-19 cases there is expected to rise as a new outbreak was discovered this week at Accordius Health, a longterm healthcare facility. Harrisonburg has reported a total of 233 cases of COVID-19, with another 100 reported in Rockingham County.
Statewide, Virginia saw 562 new cases overnight to bring the total to 8,053. One week ago, there were 5,077 COVID-19 cases in the state.
Hospitalizations increased by 75 overnight statewide, with 398 in intensive care and 230 on ventilators, according to the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association. Those figures are slightly down from the previous day.
As of April 17, the VDH reports a total of 51,931 people in Virginia have now been tested — nearly 3,000 in the last 24 hours.
Fairfax County continues to be the state’s “hot spot,” with 157 new cases of COVID-19 overnight and a total of 1,633. That’s 20 percent of all the cases in Virginia.
The breakdown of COVID-19 cases in Northern Virginia looks like this (one-day increase):
- 1,633 — Fairfax County (157)
- 700 — Prince William County (66)
- 520 — Arlington (35)
- 413 — Loudoun County (28)
- 354 — Alexandria (33)
The Richmond area continues to see more new cases each day than the Tidewater region. The total number of COVID-19 cases in Richmond, Henrico and Chesterfield combined has surpassed 1,000. Virginia Beach has maintained a slow, but steady growth in new cases, which now total 271.
The VHHA reports that as of April 17, a total of 1,228 patients who were hospitalized with COVID-19 have been discharged.
The VDH now reports a total of 129 outbreaks across the state (up 12 since yesterday). Of those, 74 are in long-term care facilities.
The state death toll due to COVID-19 rose by 27 overnight, to a new total of 258. Of those, 104 have died in the last four days.