RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — Virginia passed 20,000 total COVID-19 cases and 700 deaths on May 5, a day after Gov. Ralph Northam announced the commonwealth was preparing to enter phase 1 of its reopening plan on Friday, May 15.
The Virginia Department of Health reported 764 total cases statewide on Tuesday, with 717 confirmed by testing. That’s down slightly from Monday, and the second straight day of daily reported cases going downward.
60 of those 764 new cases were in the Tidewater region, where new reported cases, outside of cases on the Eastern Shore, have slowly significantly as of late. Though both Eastern Shore counties, Accomack and Northampton, only reported 5 new cases in total on Tuesday (Accomack did report 1 new death). Many cases on the Eastern Shore have been linked to Accomack’s Perdue and Tyson chicken plants.
6 of the 29 new statewide deaths were reported in Tidewater on Tuesday: 1 in Accomack, 2 in Hampton, 1 in Isle of Wight, 1 in James City County and 1 in Suffolk.
Here’s the latest breakdown: (numbers in parentheses are increases from Monday):
Accomack: 429 cases, 21 hospitalized, 7 deaths (+ 4 cases, +1 death)
Chesapeake: 293 cases, 65 hospitalized, 9 deaths (+9 cases, +2 hospitalizations)
Franklin: 23 cases, 2 hospitalized, 1 death (no increases)
Gloucester: 26 cases, 7 hospitalized, 1 death (no increases)
Hampton: 128 cases, 28 hospitalized, 3 deaths (+2 deaths)
Isle of Wight: 100 cases, 10 hospitalized, 3 deaths (+1 case, +1 hospitalization, +1 death)
James City County: 166 cases, 51 hospitalized, 14 deaths (+1 case, +1 death)
Mathews: 4 cases, 1 hospitalized, 0 deaths (no increases)
Newport News: 133 cases, 35 hospitalized, 9 deaths (+1 case)
Norfolk: 251 cases, 46 hospitalized, 4 deaths (+12 cases, +1 hospitalization)
Northampton: 140 cases, 5 hospitalized, 1 death (+1 case)
Poquoson: 7 cases, 2 hospitalized, 0 death (+1 case, first since April 10)
Portsmouth: 187 cases, 36 hospitalized, 8 deaths (+4 cases, +1 hospitalization)
Southampton: 128 cases, 3 hospitalized, 1 death (+1 case)
Suffolk: 205 cases, 37 hospitalized, 15 deaths (+15 new cases, +1 hospitalization, +1 death)
Virginia Beach: 445 cases, 83 hospitalized, 15 deaths (+6 new cases)
Williamsburg: 27 cases, 7 hospitalized, 2 deaths (+4 new cases)
York: 48 cases, 8 hospitalized, 1 death (+1 new case, + 1 hospitalization)
To view the latest data and cases trends in your city/county, visit VDH’s website here and click on the “locality” tab.
Current hospitalizations statewide also increased from Monday, up to 1,496 total. ICU hospitalizations increased to 361, per Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association data.
New data delayed
The Virginia Department of Health was supposed to release new data on Tuesday detailing the spread of coronavirus in the commonwealth, but it’s yet to appear on VDH’s website.
More on the expected updates below.
Scientists with the VDH have been working to use data to track the spread of COVID-19 in Virginia. This data is being used by Gov. Ralph Northam as he makes decisions on the safe reopening of the commonwealth.
Northam spoke about the importance of testing to determine how COVID-19 has — and continues to — spread in Virginia.
“Our cases continue to rise,” Northam said. “This number will continue to go up, in part, because we are doing more testing. Robust testing and tracing are critical to this entire effort. We get a better idea of the spread by looking at how many tests come up positive.”
The new data includes a set that shows the number of people tested per day since March 16, with a colored indicator of how many of those tests were positive for COVID-19 on a given date. The data also includes a seven-day average of people tested for COVID-19 in Virginia.
“We want to see a downward trend of that percentage over 14 days,” Northam said.
Two sets of data will detail deaths linked to coronavirus in Virginia: By the dates these deaths were reported to VDH and by the dates the people died.
Another new data set will show the number of people tested per-day since March 16. The COVID-19 testing data is reported to VDH each day by labs across Virginia.
The new data will also have a graph that shows the number of people treated for COVID-19 in Virginia’s hospitals since mid-April. That data set shows how many people were hospitalized, in ICU, and on ventilators for a given date. New data also monitors hospital bed capacity as Virginia’s doctors begin to perform elective procedures across the commonwealth, while facilities continue to care for COVID-19 patients.
“We will watch this especially closely over the next couple of weeks as hospitals have resumed elective surgeries,” Northam said.
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