23 new cases of COVID-19 reported

A third Hoosier has died of COVID-19, the Indiana State Department of Health announced Friday.

The patient is an adult resident of Marion County over the age of 60 who had been hospitalized, officials said.

State health officials reported 23 new cases of COVID-19 in Indiana on Friday, raising the statewide total to 79 since the first case of the virus in the state was confirmed on March 6. All but one of the confirmed cases have been adults.

There have been 554 tests administered for COVID-19, though that figure may not include the number of tests administered at third-party labs.

However, the total number of confirmed cases reported by ISDH includes positive test results detected at state health department and third-party labs.

There have been three deaths so far in Indiana, one in Marion County and the other in Johnson County.

There are no new cases reported in Bartholomew County as of Friday.

The following county breakdown was provided by the health department:

Counties reporting one case: Adams, Allen, Bartholomew, Clark, Fayette, Grant, Jennings, LaPorte, Madison, Noble, Owen, Shelby, Vanderburgh, Vigo, Wayne, Wells

Counties reporting two cases: Boone, Floyd, Franklin, Tippecanoe

Counties reporting four cases: Hendricks, Johnson

Counties reporting five cases: Hamilton, Howard

Counties reporting six cases: Lake, St. Joseph

Marion County has the largest number of cases reported, 25, with two deaths.

The Bartholomew County case, detected in an adult patient in isolation and in stable condition at Columbus Regional Hospital, is the only local confirmed case so far.

No new deaths linked to COVID-19 have been reported in Indiana. So far, two patients over the age of 60 have died from the illness, one each in Marion and Johnson counties, according to state health officials.

A spike in COVID-19 cases in Indiana is expected as state health officials have ramped up testing, said Kristina Box, Indiana State Health Commissioner, during a press conference on Friday.

“As we start to test more, we’re going to get more positives ,” Box said. “We expect that, so don’t be surprised about that.”

Case of COVID-19 continued increasing around much of the world, including the United States, on Friday. There were at least 266,000 confirmed cases of the virus globally, including at least 16,600 in the United States, according to the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center. Over 11,000 deaths have been linked to the virus around the world.

On Friday, Illinois and New York joined California with their own sheltering at home mandates, ordering all residents to stay in their homes unless they have vital reasons to go out, The Associated Press reported.

Together, the actions by the states’ governors amount to the most sweeping efforts in the U.S. yet to contain the spread of the coronavirus, according to wire reports. The three states encompass more than 70 million people and the three biggest cities in America: New York, Los Angeles and Chicago.

During a press conference on Friday, Gov. Eric Holcomb said the community spread of COVID-19 is still not at the point that he will mandate sheltering in place.

“This is why it’s so important to follow the recommendations we’re putting out, so we don’t get to that day here in the state of Indiana,” Holcomb said. “So the more people who practice social distancing, the less likely we get to the point to where we have to mandate a sheltering in place requirement.”

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Columbus and Bartholomew County officials have created a site on the Bartholomew County website where information will be shared about coronavirus, at bartholomew.in.gov/emergency-management.html#covid-19.

Visit crh.org/news/2020/03/12/coronavirus-update-what-you-need-to-know to learn more about Columbus Regional Health’s COVID-19 Triage Resource Call Center.

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Local residents with concerns are urged to call the health system’s Triage Resource Call Center, a phone resource line launched by CRH last week to handle calls from residents with questions and concerns about exposure or symptoms associated with COVID-19, CRH officials said.

The phone resource line can be contacted at 812-379-4449 and is open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and is staffed by registered nurses who will offer screening questions and potentially recommend a course of action for patients.

Visit crh.org/news/2020/03/16/coronavirus-update-what-you-need-to-know for more information.

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To see the latest list of closing and cancellations, see Page A3.