INDIANA — Clark and Floyd counties are among the more than half of Indiana counties now raised to yellow on the state department of health map that tracks the rate of new cases of COVID-19.
As of the weekly report Wednesday, there were 47 yellow counties on the map and four orange — Gibson, Knox, Montgomery and Newton on the western side of the state. The map tracks the seven-day positivity rate for all tests and the number of new cases per week per 100,000.
The change in map color follows an uptick in new cases seen over the past several weeks. Statewide, there were 762,837 overall cases reported since March 2020 with 731 new as of Wednesday. Clark County has 13,411 cases, 13 new, and Floyd has had 7,948 cases, seven new.
The seven-day positivity rate for unique individuals between July 8 and 14 in Clark County is nearly double that of the state, with 11.7% to the state’s 6.5%. Floyd’s is 8%. The seven-day rate for all tests is 5.2% in Indiana, 8.1% in Clark County and 5.2% in Floyd County.
This comes as the CDC has reported that the highly contagious Delta variant now makes up about 84% of U.S. cases. The Indiana Department of Health reports that 70% of samples taken this month are of the Delta variant, up 38.9% from last month.
Those age 20 to 29 continue to be the age group with the highest positivity rate overall — making up 18.5% of cases statewide, 17.6% of Clark County cases and 16.9% of Floyd County cases.
There are no new deaths reported in either Clark or Floyd counties, and seven at the state level.
As of information reported Wednesday, 2.9 million Hoosiers have been fully vaccinated — 52,863 in Clark County and 35,908 in Floyd.
The Associated Press has reported that across the U.S., the seven-day rolling average for daily new cases rose over the past two weeks to more than 37,000 Tuesday, up from less than 13,700 on July 6, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
Health officials blame the delta variant and slowing vaccination rates. Just 56.2% of Americans have gotten at least one dose of the vaccine, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“It is like seeing the car wreck before it happens,” said Dr. James Williams, a clinical associate professor of emergency medicine at Texas Tech, who has recently started treating more COVID-19 patients. “None of us want to go through this again.”
He said the patients are younger — many in their 20s, 30s and 40s — and overwhelmingly unvaccinated.
In Louisiana, health officials reported 5,388 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday — the third-highest daily count since the beginning of the pandemic in early 2020. Hospitalizations for the disease rose to 844 statewide, up more than 600 since mid-June.
Utah reported having 295 people hospitalized due to the virus, the highest number since February. The state has averaged about 622 confirmed cases per day over the last week, about triple the infection rate at its lowest point in early June. Health data shows the surge is almost entirely connected to unvaccinated people.