County’s COVID-19 positivity rate down to 6.98% as of seven-day average through Oct. 2

243 new cases reported over seven days through Oct. 4

The latest data reflecting conditions in Sarasota County show the COVID-19 positivity rate, averaged for the seven days through Oct. 2, was 6.98%, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported.

The seven-day average through Sept. 30 was 8.56%, the CDC pointed out at that time.

Thus, the positivity rate has continued to fall from the 11.2% level that the CDC noted for the seven days through Sept. 18, as The Sarasota News Leader pointed out in its Sept. 23 issue.

To put those figures in further perspective: The CDC report for the county for the seven days through Sunday, April 3, put the positivity rate at 4.66%.

Additionally, for the seven days through Oct. 4, the CDC said the county had recorded 243 COVID cases, a drop from the figure of 417 in the agency’s Sept. 20 update. The CDC noted that the Oct. 4 number was down 34.5% from its previous seven-day average.

The CDC put the case rate per 100,000 county residents, averaged for the seven days through Oct. 6, at 85.53. That compares to 121.04 for the seven-day average through Sept. 22.

Further, in its Oct. 6 update, the CDC pointed out that the percentage of staffed hospital beds in use by patients with COVID-19 reflected 3% of the county’s total.

For the seven days through Oct. 3, the CDC estimated that the number of new hospital admissions of county residents with confirmed COVID cases was 43, and it said that only 5% of Intensive Care Unit (ICU) beds in the county were in use by COVID-19 patients. However, the latter figure was up 0.8% from the previous seven-day average, the CDC pointed out.

Because of preparations for Hurricane Ian’s arrival, and staffing efforts to aid those affected by the storm, Sarasota Memorial Hospital (SMH) has had only three weekday updates that the News Leader has found since Sept. 23. On Sept. 23, SMH reported 42 COVID-19 patients, with three of them in its ICUs in Sarasota and Venice.

By Sept. 26, the number of COVID patients on the health care system’s two campuses had fallen to 29; however, five of those were in the ICUs.

On Oct. 5, SMH reported no change from the Sept. 26 statistics.

Finally, the CDC map of Florida, reflecting COVID-19 transmission levels in all of Florida’s counties, averaged over the seven days through Sept. 28, showed none of them with a level higher than “Medium.” That was the category for Sarasota County, as well as Hillsborough, Pinellas and DeSoto counties. However, Manatee, Lee and Collier counties all were classified as having “Low” transmission on that map.