ENID, Okla. — Seventeen Oklahoma counties, including three in Northwest Oklahoma, were elevated to the "moderate risk" (orange) category for COVID-19 based on the Oklahoma State Department's of Health's weekly alert map.
Blaine, Garfield and Kingfisher went from low risk to moderate, and Alfalfa County was elevated from "new normal" (green) to "low risk" (yellow) after adding three new cases to the one positive, test it had maintained for weeks, according to the map, which was released Friday. Garfield County saw its numbers increase from 201 to 330, including a single-day record increase of 53, during the week encompassing Friday, July 24 to Thursday, July 30, according to OSDH data.
The moderate risk phase is described by OSDH as "many COVID-19 positive cases are present in the community with undetected cases likely. The risk of infection is heightened by community spread, and robust testing and containment measures are recommended to mitigate further spread."
The remainder of Northwest Oklahoma is in low risk, which means positive cases are present and the risk of infection is elevated. Overall, there are 32 Oklahoma counties in the moderate (orange) risk, 44 in the low (yellow) risk and one in the new normal (green) phases. There are no counties in the designated "high risk" (red) phase.
The state gained more new COVID-19 cases in July than it did in March through June combined, according to data from the OSDH. Oklahoma had a cumulative 14,112 cases of COVID-19 on July 1, compared to 36,487 on July 31, a gain of 22,375, according to OSDH data.
More than 61% of the overall cases in the state were in July. Approximately 70% more specimens also were collected and processed in July than June, according to an OSDH email Friday afternoon.
"It's concerning," said Maggie Jackson, OSDH regional director of community engagement and health planning for District 2, which covers Blaine, Canadian, Garfield, Grant, Kingfisher, Logan and Major counties. Jackson also represents the Alfalfa County office. "We're watching cases grow in our own communities at similar rates."
Garfield County had 68 cases at the first of the month, and ended July with 330 cumulative cases, according to OSDH data.
And now that the county has been elevated in the OSDH's risk category, she said, residents need to "ramp up some things," including wearing masks and limiting gatherings and social distancing.
When asked if she is concerned with the numbers rising as schools begin to open, Jackson said district officials are doing their best, but it is hard to predict how the virus will progress.
"I am expecting cases to increase when schools start," Jackson said. "Now the severity of cases, I can't predict."
Based on more recent studies from other countries and states, children are affected less severely than the older population, she said, "but they can still transmit the virus ... to people at risk."
Currently, the majority of terminal cases, 95%, associated with the virus are affecting those older than 50, based on OSDH data.
In Oklahoma, deaths associated with COVID-19 in the state in July rose at a much lower rate than cases, alone, according to OSDH data, with 389 on July 1 compared to 541 on Friday, a difference of 152, or 39%.
The number of active cases was reported at 3,118 July 1 and was 6,759 on July 31, and hospitalizations went from 1,553 to 3,161 during the month, an increase of 1,608.
There were 747 new COVID-19 cases confirmed in the state Friday, with five more deaths reported, according to the OSDH. Garfield County saw an increase of six cases.
Statewide, the total of cumulative cases rose to 36,487, a 2.1% single-day increase, compared to the prior day's count, according to OSDH. Overall deaths rose to 541.
Three of the five deaths were in the 65 and older age group, two women in Cleveland and Rogers counties and a Creek County man; an Oklahoma County man was in the 50-64 age group; and a Cleveland County woman was in the 36-49 age group, according to OSDH.
Of the total cases in Oklahoma, 6,759 were active, a single-day decrease of 34, as of Friday, July 31, and 29,187, just less than 80%, have recovered, including 776 since Thursday's OSDH report. Of the total cases in Garfield County, 77 were active on Friday, according to OSDH data.
COVID-19 case increases among other Northwest Oklahoma counties on Friday included six in Blaine, five in Kingfisher, three each in Major and Noble and two each in Grant and Woodward.
There have been 3,161 cumulative hospitalizations associated with COVID-19, an increase of 57 since Thursday's OSDH report. Of those, 628 were hospitalized, an increase of seven from Thursday, with 258 in intensive care, an increase of five, based on OSDH data released Friday evening.
Of the 632,533 specimens taken by OSDH, 589,091 or 93.1%, have been negative for the virus.
Increases of cases per age group were 235 in 18-35, 158 in 50-64, 150 in 36-49, 104 in 65 and older, 89 in 5-17 and 12 in 0-4, according to the OSDH on Friday.
Cumulative totals of confirmed cases as of Friday were 842 in the 0-4 age group, 3,101 in the 5-17 age group, 13,060 in the 18-35 age group, 7,958 in the 36-49 age group, 6,474 in the 50-64 age group and 5,052 in the 65 and older age group. The average age of those with COVID-19 is 40.2, based on OSDH data.
Of those testing positive, 18,932 have been female and 17,526 have been male. There were 29 listed as "unknown" gender, according to OSDH data on Friday.
Of the overall 541 deaths in the state associated with the virus, 429 have been 65 and older and 86 have been ages 50-64, making up a combined 95.2% of the total. There have been 17 deaths in the 36-49 age group, eight in the 18-35 age group and one in the 5-17 age group. More men, 293, than women, 248, have succumbed to the virus, according to OSDH on Friday. The average age of those who have died is 74.5.
OSDH reports 76.3% of those who have died have had a pre-existing condition. Just less than 45% of the deaths, 243, have been long-term care or nursing home cases, according to OSDH. There have been 1,424 cases among long-term care residents and 847 cases among staff, according to OSDH's Executive Report filed Friday evening.
Data shows deaths in 50 of Oklahoma's 77 counties, with 98 in Tulsa County; 97 in Oklahoma County; 49 in Cleveland County; 39 in Washington County; 25 in McCurtain County; 22 in Wagoner County; 19 in Delaware County; 16 in Muskogee County; 14 each in Caddo and Rogers counties; 13 in Creek County; 11 in Osage County; 10 each in Comanche and Kay counties; seven each in Greer and Texas counties; six each in Grady, Mayes and Pottawatomie counties; five each in Adair, Canadian and Seminole counties; four each in Garfield, Garvin, McClain and Sequoyah counties; three each in Carter, Jackson, Pawnee, Payne and Pittsburg counties; two each in Cotton, Lincoln, Noble, Okmulgee, Ottawa, Stephens and Pontotoc counties; and one each in Bryan, Cherokee, Choctaw, Hughes, Kiowa, Latimer, Leflore, Logan, Major, McIntosh, Nowata and Tillman counties.
Oklahoma per county 7.31.20
Oklahoma per city 7.31.20
COVID-19 data released Friday for Northwest Oklahoma counties shows Garfield with 330 cases, 249 recovered, 77 active and four deaths, including one reported July 28, one reported July 23, a woman in the 36-49 age group in June and an 86-year-old from Garfield County in April; Kingfisher with 101 cases, 82 recovered and 19 active; Noble with 77 cases, 65 recovered, 10 active and two deaths, including a Billings man in the 65 and older age range; Blaine with 45 cases, 25 recovered and 20 active; Woodward with 32 cases, 25 recovered and seven active; Major with 26 cases, 22 recovered, three active and one death, a woman in 18-35 age group in April; Woods with 15 cases, 13 recovered and two active; Grant with nine cases, seven recovered and two active; and Alfalfa with four cases, two recovered and two active.
Cumulative COVID-19 cases by city or town in Northwest Oklahoma include 308 in Enid (71 active); 48 in Kingfisher (15 active); 27 in Woodward (six active); 23 in Hennessey (two active) and Okarche (three active); 14 in Watonga (four active); 13 in Fairview (two active); 12 in Alva (two active) and Cashion (one active); eight in Waukomis (five active); six in Ringwood; five in Pond Creek; four each in Freedom, Garber, Lahoma, Longdale (one active) and Medford (three active); three in Mulhall and Okeene (one active); two each in Canton, Dover, Helena (two active), Hitchcock (one active), Lamont (one active), Marshall, Mooreland (one active), Meno and Seiling; and one each in Cleo Springs (one active), Covington, Fort Supply and Jet, according to data released by OSDH on Friday. Residents living in areas with under 100 in population or those with unknown addresses may be recorded as "other."
In Enid, there have been 151 cases, with 107 recovered and three deaths, from the 73701 ZIP code, primarily the eastern half of the city, and 157 cases, with 126 recovered and one death, from 73703, or the western half, according to OSDH data on Friday. There also has been one recovered case in the 73705 ZIP code, which is listed as Vance Air Force Base at https://www.unitedstateszipcodes.org/.
State Health Department officials are encouraging Oklahomans to get tested for COVID-19, saying recently that due to adequate supplies, residents no longer need to exhibit symptoms or report exposure to someone with the virus to get in line for testing.
Free testing for COVID-19 is ongoing at the Garfield County and other state Health Departments. Testing is by appointment only for Blaine County, 521 W. 4th, Watonga, (580) 623-7977; Garfield County, 2501 S. Mercer, Enid, (580) 233-0650; Grant County, 115 N. Main, Medford, (580) 395-2906; Kingfisher County, 124 E. Sheridan, courthouse annex room #101, Kingfisher, (405) 375-3008; Major County, 501 E. Broadway, Fairview, (580) 227-3362; Noble County, 300 Fir St., Perry, (580) 336-2257; Woods County, 511 Barnes St., Alva, (580) 327-3192; and Woodward County, 1631 Texas Ave., Woodward, (580) 256-6416. For a full list of county drive-through testing, go to https://coronavirus.health.ok.gov/drive-thru-testing. Some health department also advise the public to check their Facebook pages for more information regarding testing.
Emergency warning signs for COVID-19 are trouble breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion or inability to arouse, bluish lips or face, according to the CDC. More information can be found at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html.
Those with symptoms of COVID-19 should call ahead to local emergency rooms. Those with minor symptoms should contact their regular physicians.
Resources and information on COVID-19 can be obtained by calling 211 or going to https://covidresources.ok.gov/.
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