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Ardmore hospital with record number of virus patients

Michael D. Smith

The worsening pandemic in southern Oklahoma resulted in another record number of COVID-19 patients at Mercy Hospital Ardmore on Tuesday. 

The Mercy Hospital Ardmore campus on Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020. The hospital was caring for a record high 56 COVID-19 patients on Tuesday, with nine of those people receiving care in the hospital's intensive care unit.

The hospital was caring for 56 patients with COVID-19 on Tuesday afternoon, nine of whom were in an intensive care unit, according to Mercy Hospital media relations Executive Director Nancy Corbett in a Tuesday email. The previous record high of 51 COVID-19 patients was set on Dec. 31, 2020.

Carter County has recorded 4,064 cases of the disease after 37 new cases were reported on Tuesday, according to the Oklahoma State Department of Health. The seven-day average of new cases in the county rose to 136.4 on Tuesday, the highest number recorded, according to OSDH data compiled by The Ardmoreite.

The seven-day average of new COVID-19 cases in Carter County is 10 times higher than early November.

The recent surge of the coronavirus in southern Oklahoma has resulted in at least 939 active cases of COVID-19 in Carter County on Tuesday, falling from a record high 1,046 on Monday. Statewide, 40,024 active cases of the disease were recorded, down from the record 43,163 on Monday.

The true number of cases in Oklahoma is likely higher because many people have not been tested and studies suggest people can be infected and not feel sick. OSDH reports of confirmed cases and deaths linked to COVID-19 are known to be delayed by days or even weeks.

Statewide hospitalizations remained near 1,900 for a fourth consecutive day as the health care system became more inundated by the pandemic. The seven-day average of new COVID-19 hospitalizations statewide nearly reached 200 on Tuesday and has not fallen below 100 since Nov. 13. Just over 47% of all COVID-19 hospitalizations in Oklahoma have been recorded in that time.

Oklahoma hospitals admitted an average of 200 people with COVID-19 every day between Jan. 6 and Jan. 12. In that time, the number of actual hospitalizations has only dropped by 85.

Oklahoma has recorded 337,457 cases of COVID-19 after 2,210 new cases were reported on Tuesday, according to OSDH data. The death toll reported by OSDH grew to 2,804 after 29 new deaths linked to COVID-19 were reported on Tuesday.

The seven-day average of new daily cases statewide set a record for a third consecutive day when it climbed to 4,170. The seven-day average for new deaths also reached record highs on Monday.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, and death.