The Journal Gazette
Thursday, September 09, 2021 1:10 am

DeKalb, Whitley in virus red zone

Positivity rates rise; Allen County nearly in worst level


Two counties in northeast Indiana have joined 19 others in Indiana in the red zone, the state's most serious category for the spread of COVID-19.

DeKalb County, with a seven-day positivity rate that has risen to 15.3%, and Whitley County, with a rising 16.58% positivity rate, also have had more than 200 new cases per 100,000 people in the last week, according to the Indiana Department of Health.

In DeKalb County, that was 439 cases per 100,000, and in Whitley, 538 cases.

A 15% positivity rate is required for a county to move into red.

Allen County again narrowly escaped being red in the state's color-coded map. The county stands in the top level of the orange category, the second most serious.

Allen County did qualify for red in having 453 cases per 100,000 people but stayed in orange because its positivity rate dropped to 11.35%. Both indicators have to be in the same color for the status of the county to change.

The rest of northeast Indiana's counties are in orange – with Huntington, Kosciusko, Noble, Wabash and Wells in the upper tier of orange and Adams and Steuben in the lower tier.

LaGrange is the only regional county to be in yellow, but it is also in the top tier of that third most serious category.

Only two other counties – Porter and Monroe – are in the top half of the yellow category. The rest of Indiana is in some version of orange. The other red counties are mostly in the southeastern and southwestern parts of the state.

Last week, 13 counties were in red, 75 counties were in orange and four were in yellow.

Allen County on Wednesday reported that 159 more people had tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total to 50,846.

The county also added 14 deaths Wednesday, but they occurred during the previous two weeks. Total deaths of county residents stand at 731.

Indiana reported 2,952 new cases Wednesday and 86 deaths, bringing the total cases to 889,362 and 14,258 confirmed deaths with 451 deaths of patients based on symptoms but without a positive test result.

The map and the statistics are issued at noon on Wednesdays and are based on data for the seven days ending the previous Sunday.

The color codes had been used to determine the level of COVID-19 restrictions but are no longer used for that purpose. However, the maps still serve as a guide for local health and government officials in determining what actions should be taken with regard to COVID-19.

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