Oklahoma coronavirus cases climb to 4,900 and 284 deaths

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – As state and city leaders discuss plans to further reopen Oklahoma, health officials say the state’s coronavirus cases have grown to more than 4,900.

On Thursday morning, data from the Oklahoma State Department of Health shows that the state currently has 4,962 confirmed cases of COVID-19.Data pix.

The cases are in the following counties:

  • Adair: 74 (3 deaths)
  • Alfalfa: 1
  • Atoka: 1
  • Beaver: 20
  • Beckham: 6
  • Blaine: 1
  • Bryan: 12 (1 death)
  • Caddo: 110 (9 death)
  • Canadian: 116 (3 deaths)
  • Carter: 7 (1 death)
  • Cherokee: 29 (1 death)
  • Choctaw: 3
  • Cimarron: 1
  • Cleveland: 458 (35 deaths)
  • Comanche: 197 (3 deaths)
  • Cotton: 5 (2 death)
  • Craig: 13
  • Creek: 83 (7 deaths)
  • Custer: 12
  • Delaware: 93 (16 deaths)
  • Dewey: 2
  • Garfield: 22 (1 death)
  • Garvin: 15 (1 death)
  • Grady: 58 (2 deaths)
  • Grant: 2
  • Greer: 66 (7 deaths)
  • Harper: 1
  • Haskell: 5
  • Jackson: 21 (1 death)
  • Jefferson: 3
  • Johnston: 3
  • Kay: 49 (7 deaths)
  • Kingfisher: 10
  • Kiowa: 6
  • Latimer: 5 (1 death)
  • Le Flore: 14 (1 death)
  • Lincoln: 17 (2 deaths)
  • Logan: 18 (1 death)
  • Love: 3
  • Major: 6 (1 death)
  • Marshall: 2
  • Mayes: 26 (4 deaths)
  • McClain: 86 (2 deaths)
  • McCurtain: 9
  • McIntosh: 5
  • Murray: 2
  • Muskogee: 30 (6 deaths)
  • Noble: 7
  • Nowata: 23
  • Okfuskee: 2
  • Oklahoma: 1,013 (45 deaths)
  • Okmulgee: 16
  • Osage: 90 (8 deaths)
  • Ottawa: 34 (2 death)
  • Pawnee: 29 (2 deaths)
  • Payne: 44 (1 death)
  • Pittsburg: 39 (3 death)
  • Pontotoc: 10 (2 deaths)
  • Pottawatomie : 55 (4 deaths)
  • Pushmataha: 1
  • Rogers: 72 (5 deaths)
  • Seminole: 21 (2 deaths)
  • Sequoyah: 14 (3 deaths)
  • Stephens: 22 (1 death)
  • Texas: 541 (4 deaths)
  • Tillman: 21 (1 death)
  • Tulsa: 743 (37 deaths)
  • Wagoner: 131 (17 deaths)
  • Washington: 301 (29 deaths)
  • Washita: 1
  • Woods: 3
  • Woodward: 1.

While Oklahoma and Tulsa counties have the most positive cases due to population size, health officials say they are paying close attention to Texas County.

“Over the past week, OSDH has deployed several systems of support into Texas County and the surrounding areas to address a heightened presence of COVID-19. The largest employer in the county, Seaboard Foods, has been a good partner with state agencies by allowing OSDH to test all processing plant employees,” said Health Commissioner Gary Cox. “We are also partnering on guidance and solutions to ensure the company continues doing everything possible to protect its workers. Over the next few days, we expect spikes in our reporting of positive cases due to the significant number of tests processed for Texas County, which is reflective of our increased testing efforts.”

Officials also announced six additional deaths from the virus:

  • A woman and a man in the 65 and older age group in Oklahoma County
  • Two men in the 65 and older age group in Cleveland County
  • A man in the 50 to 64-year-old age group in Comanche County
  • A woman in the 65 and older age group in Washington County.
Oklahoma State Department of Health

Authorities say three of the patients died in the past 24 hours, while the others died between May 4 and May 11.

Officials with the Oklahoma State Department of Health tell KFOR that experts must gather several pieces of information in order to classify a death as related to COVID-19.

“We can have a death reported to us, but with missing information that we have to gather or the reporting entity can have a delay in reporting  the info to OSDH as well. All that is to say, no one is artificially inflating or deflating any numbers, it is there are quite a few “boxes” to check before we can officially report a death attributed to Covid-19 and that process along with delays in reporting can mean that it’s not possible to officially report a death within 24 hours of that death occurring, although every effort is made to do so,” Shelley Zumwalt, with OMES and working on behalf of the Oklahoma State Department of Health, said in an email.

picture of health care workers taking swabs
Medical workers at Kaiser Permanente French Campus test a patient for the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, at a drive-thru testing facility in San Francisco, California on March 12, 2020. – Between 70 to 150 million people in the United States could eventually be infected with the novel coronavirus, according to a projection shared with Congress, a lawmaker said March 12, 2020. (Photo by Josh Edelson / AFP) (Photo by JOSH EDELSON/AFP via Getty Images)

So far, officials say 284 Oklahoma patients have died and 858 people have been hospitalized. Currently, 217 patients are hospitalized.

According to health department data, officials believe 3,660 Oklahomans have recovered from the virus. Although the CDC recommends patients be tested twice to determine if they have recovered, health department officials say they are preserving tests for patients who are sick.

Instead, the Oklahoma State Department of Health identifies a person as recovered if they are currently not hospitalized or deceased and it has been 14 days since the onset of their symptoms or since they were diagnosed.

image of a test tube with covid-19 marked positive
(Photo by Thomas Imo/Photothek via Getty Images)

State officials urge Oklahomans to stay away from ill patients and to frequently wash their hands. Also, avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

At this point, Americans are urged to practice ‘social distancing’ by staying in their homes as much as possible and not going out into a crowd.

The virus is mainly spread from person-to-person, and symptoms usually appear two to 14 days after exposure. Officials stress that the most common symptoms are fever, cough, and shortness of breath.

If you do become sick, you are asked to stay away from others. If you have been in an area where the coronavirus is known to be spreading or been around a COVID-19 patient and develop symptoms, you are asked to call your doctor ahead of time and warn them that you might have been exposed to the virus. That way, experts say, they have the ability to take extra precautions to protect staff and other patients.

Starbucks tables blocked off
Tables at an Oklahoma City Starbucks are blocked off to prevent diners from eating in. Officials say it is all in an attempt to force social distancing.

The novel coronavirus was first detected in China late last year and has since spread to locations across the globe, including the United States.

While the full extent of COVID-19 is not known yet, reported illnesses have ranged from extremely mild to severe, some resulting in death. Officials say that 80 to 85 percent of cases of COVID-19 have been mild, similar to a cold or the flu.

Older people and those with underlying health conditions like heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes are at a greater risk for a serious case.

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