COVID-19 active case count in Knox County tops 4,500


KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – Active COVID-19 cases in Knox County reached a new high Thursday.

The Knox County Health Department reported three new deaths and 527 new cases among residents. There are now a record 4,562 active cases in Knox County, surpassing the previous record of 4,301 set on Tuesday.

There are 1,886 probable cases in Knox County, an increase of 240 from Wednesday.

So far this month, 400 or more new cases have been reported seven times, a mark never previously reached before December. Sunday marked the biggest one-day increase in cases since the onset of the pandemic and the first time the county had ever reported 500 cases in a single day.

There are 127 county residents currently hospitalized due to COVID-19, one fewer than reported Wednesday.

KCHD has reported 237 coronavirus-related deaths since the pandemic hit Knox County in March. Two hundred twenty-nine of those have happened since July 2.

The Knox County Health Department reported 11 new COVID-19-related deaths on Wednesday, marking the first time the county has ever reported more than 10 in a single day.

December is the deadliest month for COVID-19 deaths in the county with 70 deaths reported so far, surpassing November’s record of 62 in roughly half the time. The previous record for most deaths reported in a single day in Knox County was eight on Dec. 10.

Reported Knox County deaths by month

  • December: 70 deaths
  • November: 62 deaths
  • October: 21 deaths
  • September: 26 deaths
  • August: 19 deaths
  • July: 35 deaths

The inactive case count grew by 476 Thursday for a total of 22,350 in the county.

With COVID-19 cases continuing to rise, the Knox County Board of Health voted 9-1 on Wednesday to send a resolution to Gov. Lee asking for a statewide mask mandate.

The board voted 7-3 in favor of passing a new COVID-19 Social Gathering Limitation Regulation on Dec. 2, limiting some social gatherings to 10 people. The regulation went into effect Dec. 4.

As of Sept. 4, KCHD reports “inactive” cases instead of “recovered” cases. Inactive cases include those who are 14 days or more beyond their illness onset date or, for asymptomatic cases, their specimen collection date. This is in alignment with the Tennessee Department of Health.

KCHD updates its numbers daily at 11 a.m. Visit for more information. Press briefings by the Knox County Health Department are on Tuesday and Thursday. Briefings begin at 12:30 p.m.

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