Local legislators participate in conference call with Governor Ivey and State Health Officer

WINSTON COUNTY - Local legislators had an opportunity to take part in a conference call with Governor Kay Ivey and State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris Monday, April 6, receiving an update on the COVID-19 situation in Alabama.

Representative Tracy Estes placed a report on his Facebook page after the call, reporting some more specific demographic information regarding deaths from COVID-19 in the state.  Estes reported that Harris noted that 44% of COVID-19 deaths in the state to date have occurred in ersons under age 65, with 47% of victims being African-American.  Among the reported cases in the state, 15% involve healthcare workers.

Representative Tim Wadsworth also took part in the conference call and summarized it on his Facebook page.  He noted that as of Monday, there have been nearly 1,900 COVID-19 confirmed cases within the state, with 250 persons who tested positive for it having to be hospitalized.  Out of the 250 hospitalized, half have been or are in intensive care units.  Wadsworth also noted that 270 healthcare workers across the state have tested positive for COVID-19 and are now quarantined for two weeks.

Estes noted that the state is expecting the number of cases in Alabama to peak somewhere between April 17-19.  Health department officials added that the state is currently able to meet the needed demand for ventilators, but the expected surge in cases over the next two weeks could put a strain on the state's ability to do so.  Both Estes and Wadsworth noted that ventilators that were being used for educational purposes at two-year college campuses across the state have been transitioned into the statewide healthcare system.

Wadsworth's post also included a summary from the Alabama Hospital Association.  It states that 52% of hospital beds in the state are available for COVID-19 patients, with 1,800 ventilators available.  In addition, 35% of ICU beds are available.  Personal protective equipment is in marginal supply statewide, with many hospitals reporting only having days worth of PPE available.  The state is prioritizing PPE for hospitals, nursing homes and areas that have high COVID-19 contact potential.

Information on case totals and deaths by county can be found here.

See complete story in the Northwest Alabamian.
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