KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – There is continuing encouraging evidence state and local stay-at-home measures to contain coronavirus are working in Tennessee.
In a Friday update from the widely followed COVID-19 projections of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, the state currently has more than enough hospital beds and intensive care beds to handle coronavirus cases through the summer.
IHME’s COVID-19 site estimates the state has passed the peak deaths per day and that the total number of deaths by Aug. 4 will be 231, far lower than its earlier estimates.
The University of Washington institute’s projections for Tennessee have been falling for the last few weeks — after Gov. Bill Lee issued a statewide stay-at-home order.
The site says in its containment strategy recommendation that by May 25 relaxing social distancing may be possible with testing, contact tracing, and limits on gatherings. Many political leaders — and protesters — have been urging a much earlier reopening of the state’s economy.
“The beginning of this timeframe is determined by our estimate of when COVID-19 infections drop below 1 per 1 million people in a given location, and is also influenced by each location’s available public health funding to implement new containment strategies,” IMHE’s website says.
A new COVID-19 site created by the founders of Instagram called Rt.live is a state-by-state coronavirus infection rate tracker.
This site tracks the virus transmission rate, or effective reproduction rate, called Rt for short.
The aim by creators Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger is to easily and visually show if the virus is spreading quickly in a state.
Rt “values over 1.0 mean we should expect more cases in that area, values under 1.0 mean we should expect fewer,” the website says.
States whose graphs have a green line are seeing fewer cases and those with a red line are seeing more.
Tennessee’s Rt rate is in the green and has moved below one to .93 as of Saturday.
Data for Rt.live comes from the open source effort “The COVID Tracking Project.”
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