The number of deaths being contributed to coronavirus in Tennessee soared over the latest 24-hour period, jumping from 44 to 65.
Those were the new numbers from the Tennessee Department of Health, released Monday afternoon, which represented a 48% increase in the number of coronavirus deaths being reported in the Volunteer State in a 24-hour period.
Most of the newly-reported deaths were spread out across Sumner County, Memphis/Shelby County and Chattanooga/Hamilton County, with two new deaths also reported in Knox County. Respectively, those four counties have death totals that now stand at 15, 13, 9 and 3. Together with Nashville/Davidson County, which has experienced 7 deaths related to the virus, the state’s four metropolitan counties — plus Sumner County, where there was a major outbreak at a Gallatin assisted living facility — account for 47 of the 65 fatalities in the Volunteer State. There have been three deaths in Rutherford County, two in Williamson County, two in Wilson County and two in Blount County. Other counties with a coronavirus-related death include Obion, Montgomery, Franklin, Marion, Greene, Hawkins, Sullivan and Trousdale.
It was not immediately clear whether the significant jump in fatalities truly occurred in the 24-hour period from Sunday to Monday, or if there were reporting inconsistencies over the weekend. Only one new death was announced by the department of health on Sunday.
Monday brought a mixed bag of good news and bad news from the department of health’s daily update, with the rising number of fatalities obviously being the bad news. With the updated death toll, 1.7% of Tennessee’s confirmed cases of coronavirus have ended in death, the highest percentage to date, though still below the nationwide average.
The goodness was only 169 new cases of coronavirus were confirmed by the department of health on Monday, causing the state’s total number of cases to rise by 4.7%. The total number of confirmed cases in Tennessee is now at 3,802. In percentage terms, it was Tennessee’s lowest single-day increase of confirmed cases in more than two weeks. It also marked the fifth consecutive day with single-digit percentage growth of the total number of cases. The overall total of 169 new cases was the smallest 24-hour increase in a week, and the second-smallest increase in two weeks.
By the numbers: As of Monday afternoon, 47,350 people had been tested for coronavirus in Tennessee, according to the Department of Health. Of those, 8.0% (3,802) came back positive. Of the positive cases, 9.3% (352) required hospitalization. The total number of deaths (65) represented 18.5% of hospitalizations. Overall, 1.7% of Tennessee’s confirmed cases of coronavirus have resulted in death. The state reports that 9.4% (356) of patients have recovered. The state has two criteria it uses for recovered patients: Those who have been confirmed asymptomatic by the health department and have completed their required isolation period, or those who are at least 21 days beyond the first test confirming their diagnosis.
The state’s total did not include a fourth case of coronavirus in Scott County, which was confirmed by Scott County Mayor Jeff Tibbals earlier in the afternoon, after he was notified by the local health department. Tibbals said he had little additional information about the fourth case of coronavirus, except that the health department had already begun its contact investigation.
According to the state’s department of health, there had been 69 tests conducted in Scott County as of Monday, an increase of only one from a day earlier. Sixty-six of those returned negative. However, Tibbals said Sunday afternoon that there are more tests being completed in Scott County — and in other Tennessee counties — than is showing up in the state’s numbers. The mayor pointed out that only one private lab out of several used by physicians’ offices is included in the state’s test count.
“We’ve had much more testing done in Scott County than is being included in the state report,” Tibbals said.