Weekly COVID-19 report: Pott. County death rate slows

Vicky O. Misa
The Shawnee News-Star
Members of the Oklahoma National Guard assist with COVID-19 vaccinations across the state. The Oklahoma National Guard continues working alongside Oklahoma State Department of Health partners throughout the state in the fight against COVID-19.

Shawnee and Pottawatomie County residents are beginning to experience some relief lately as the COVID-19 death rate has continued its decline since early April. As of Wednesday's weekly report from the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH), active cases are marking a significant decrease in the area, now at 18 for the county, while Shawnee's count has slipped into the single digits — showing nine active cases this week.

In March the OSDH adjusted the level of information previously reported in its daily updates. Oklahoma residents can't see much of the information previously provided over the past year; gender and age of victims are no longer available, but deaths are still being reported, along with their general location.

According to OSDH, the U.S. is at 590,941 for deaths, Oklahoma reports show 7,291, Pottawatomie County's total is at 127 and Shawnee now sits at 93. That's an addition of five deaths in the county in the past month — three of them were from Shawnee.

Cases

In the U.S., 33,166,418 cases have been recorded so far. That's an increase of 694,217 since last month at this time, when the total was 32,472,201. The OSDH website no longer offers data determining how many in the U.S. have recovered and how many cases are still active.

In the state, OSDH reports 452,288 total cases, and marks the active case count at 1,421, a decrease of 200 cases compared to last week. A month ago active cases were at 10,396. It should be noted, according to the OSDH reports, that there was a sharp decrease of more than 8,000 active cases between April 28 and May 5. There was no reason offered for the significant drop.

In the county, of the 8,388 total cases documented, 8,240 have reportedly recovered. Active cases number 18 — down 12 from last week; a month ago the figure was 146.

In Shawnee, there were 5,116 total cases reported, according to Wednesday's data. Reportedly, 5,014 have recovered. The OSDH reports active cases are now at nine, which is 72 fewer than last month, and two fewer than last week.

Reporting weekly

After a year of daily reports, the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) switched gears in March to offer weekly updates to the state’s COVID-19 data dashboard on its website. Reports are updated on Wednesdays.

The latest version of the dashboard can be found at https://oklahoma.gov/covid19.html.

After a vote from Shawnee City Commissioners, the city's mask requirement in public spaces ended April 30, though businesses can — and may — still choose to uphold the rule on private property.

For story ideas, questions or concerns, reporter Vicky O. Misa can be reached at vicky.misa@news-star.com.