Gov. Holcomb signs public health emergency extension following spike in COVID-19 cases

Vanderburgh Co. reports 2nd highest single-day number of new COVID cases
Gov. Holcomb signs public health emergency extension following spike in COVID-19 cases
Published: Dec. 29, 2021 at 6:34 AM CST|Updated: Dec. 29, 2021 at 6:28 PM CST
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INDIANA (WFIE) - Governor Eric Holcomb provided a live coronavirus update for the first time in several weeks on Wednesday.

He was joined by State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Lindsay Weaver.

The governor reiterated the fact that Hoosiers now have more information and are better equipped to combat this virus than at any other point in the pandemic.

“But, we continue to get some curveballs thrown at us,” says Governor Holcomb. “I am thinking of variants specifically.”

The Omicron variant, with a strangling grasp on the nation, is showing the virus is anything but ready to turn a new page with the new year.

“Our COVID-19 hospital census is at the highest level in an entire year,” says Dr. Box. “The number of people hospitalized with COVID has increased more than 700% since late June.”

At this point in the pandemic, officials say rapid tests are in high demand. Dr. Box says the state is only getting about 20% of the amount it needs.

“This is a national problem, not just an Indiana issue,” says Dr. Box. “It’s making it more difficult for Hoosiers to find rapid testing when they need it.”

With the first case of the Omicron variant reported in Indiana in December, Dr. Box says the Delta variant is still the most dominant, but probably not for long.

In response, Gov. Holcomb announced he has signed an extension for the state’s public health emergency due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The extension will last until January 31.

As of Wednesday, Dr. Box says 3.5 million Hoosiers are fully vaccinated, while more than 1.3 million have now received the COVID-19 booster.

Watch the full briefing in the video below:

On Wednesday, Indiana health officials reported 7,967 new COVID-19 cases and 58 new COVID-19 related deaths.

The pandemic total in the state is now 1,234,919 cases and 18,338 deaths.

The map shows one new death in Warrick County.

The map also shows 273 new cases in Vanderburgh County, 70 new cases in Warrick County, 48 new cases in Gibson County, 34 new cases in Perry County, 23 new cases in Dubois County, 19 new cases in Posey County, 12 new cases in Pike County and seven new cases in Spencer County.

As a reminder, any Hoosier five and older can schedule a COVID-19 vaccination appointment at https://ourshot.in.gov.

Those without a computer or cell phone can call 211.

Here are the coronavirus totals in our part of Indiana:

  • Vanderburgh Co. - 37,544 cases, 509 deaths
  • Dubois Co. - 9,347 cases, 148 deaths
  • Warrick Co. - 13,282 cases, 205 deaths
  • Perry Co. - 3,194 cases, 54 deaths
  • Posey Co. - 4,437 cases, 46 deaths
  • Gibson Co. - 7,748 cases, 121 deaths
  • Spencer Co. - 3,920 cases, 54 deaths
  • Pike Co. - 2,761 cases, 45 deaths

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