COVID-19 update: cases continue uptick across state

Vicky O. Misa
The Shawnee News-Star

The number of new COVID-19 cases continues to climb across the state, according to this week's report from the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH). In Pottawatomie County, 26 new cases were added — one higher than the recorded 25 last week. Shawnee reports 15 new cases compared to 10 last week and five the week before.

In January, Citizen Potawatomi Nation (CPN) FireLake Arena began to function as a weekly COVID-19 vaccination station. On Jan. 20, volunteers were spacing out chairs at the arena to get ready to distribute doses.

Fortunately, no new COVID-19-related deaths have seen reported in Pottawatomie County in the past month.

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 the OSDH, the U.S. is at 605,905 deaths, compared to 604,714 last week — an increase of 1,191. Oklahoma reports now show 7,406 deaths, an increase of 18 in the past seven days. Pottawatomie County's total continues to hold at 131 and Shawnee still sits at 94. The last report of deaths in the county was June 2, when one Shawnee death was marked; the week before — in the May 26 report — there was one rural death and one from Shawnee.

Cases

In the U.S., 33,747,128 cases have been recorded so far. That's an increase of 353,882 since last month at this time, when the total was 33,393,246. 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 459,205 total cases, and marks the active case count at 2,324, an increase of 1,715 cases compared to last week. For the past two months, the weekly rise in new cases averaged around 1,000 — until last week when the report showed an increase of 1,500.

In the county, of the 8,449 total cases documented, 8,292 have reportedly recovered. Active cases number 26 — up one from last week; a month ago the figure was 11.

In Shawnee, there were 5,140 total cases reported, according to Wednesday's data. Reportedly, 5,031 have recovered. The OSDH reports active cases are now at 15, which is nine more than a month ago, and five more 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.