Knox County reports more than 100 new COVID-19 cases for third consecutive day, first time since September

Local News

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – The Knox County Health Department on Monday reported no new deaths and 139 new active cases of COVID-19, a 1.28% increase in the total case count. Knox County reported 130 new cases Saturday and 108 new cases Sunday.

The three days of 100-plus new cases is the longest such streak since Sept. 10-13. Between Sept. 2-13, 100 or more new cases were reported on 11 of the 12 days.

There are now 1,131 active cases in Knox County, a net increase of 92 since Sunday. The inactive cases total grew by 92 to 10,308.

Of the 11,024 total confirmed cases reported in Knox County since the pandemic began, 395 of them have resulted in hospitalization at any point during their illness. There are 66 Knox County residents currently hospitalized due to COVID-19, an increase of 5 from the weekend.

Health officials said Thursday COVID-19 hospitalizations in and around Knox County are higher than they have ever been, and the hospital systems are urging people to get tested and to follow the safety guidelines.

KCHD has reported 86 coronavirus-related deaths since the pandemic began, 81 of which have come since July 2. The county reported 19 deaths in the month of August and 26 in September.

The first COVID-19 death in October was reported on Oct. 4.

Beginning Sept. 4, KCHD started reporting “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.

The change led to nearly 1,000 cases being deemed inactive on Sept. 5.

The Health Department also changed how data was categorized based on where cases live. The change led to a decrease of 560 active cases in one day.

On Oct. 1, Charity Menefee, director of communicable and environmental disease and emergency preparedness of the KCHD, said a discrepancy between the Tennessee Department of Health’s use of geocoded, or permanent address, data and KCHD’s jurisdictional data, coupled with a general lag in test collection and reporting identified more than 500 cases as positive after the 14-day active period.

Knox County Health Department testing is being done this week from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday at the department’s main office, 140 Dameron Ave. Lines may be cut off prior to 3 p.m. in order to process the tests and get them to the lab in a timely manner.

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

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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