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COVID-19 cases decline comes as vaccinations become more available

By Richard Rourk

COVID-19 cases continue to drop in the region at the same time that more access to vaccinations is becoming increasingly available.

According to Ballad Health’s daily scorecard on Monday, Feb. 15, there were 97 patients in Ballad Health facilities that were being treated with COVID-19. A total of 18 patients required admission to the ICU. Ballad Health reported 10 COVID-19 patients are on ventilators. The COVID-19 positivity rate was at 14.5 percent and Ballad saw 53 COVID-19 deaths over the past seven days. This brings the total COVID-19 death count to 1,751 for Ballad’s 21-county region since the pandemic began.

As of Monday, Unicoi County had 31 active cases of COVID-19. According to the Tennessee Department of Health’s COVID-19 Data Dashboard, there have been 46 COVID-19-related deaths in Unicoi County.

In Northeast Tennessee, as of Feb. 15, Washington County has 251 active positive cases of COVID-19 with 225 related deaths. Sullivan County has 384 active cases and 263 reported deaths. Greene County has 151 active cases and 140 deaths. Hawkins County has 189 active cases and 91 deaths. Carter County has 135 active cases and 147 deaths, while Johnson County is reporting 30 active cases of COVID-19 and 37 deaths.

Statewide, there have been 638,550 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 and 8,797 deaths as a result of the virus, according to the Tennessee Department of Health.

According to the CDC, as of Monday, the United States has had 27,417,468 positive cases and 482,536 deaths due to COVID-19 since Jan. 21, 2020.