ZIP codes in Norman — home to the University of Oklahoma — Chickasha and Miami lead the state’s hotspots for coronavirus infections this week as outbreaks at several prisons subside.
Three Norman ZIP codes accounted for 300 new active cases in the past week, according to an Oklahoma Watch analysis of data from the Oklahoma State Department of Health. There were 9,371 active cases across the state by Friday.
Other hotspots with large increases in active cases were Chickasha, up 56 active cases, and Miami, with an increase of 51 active cases. An active case is one where the patient has tested positive in the previous 14 days and has not died.
The Miami area has had scattered outbreaks at schools back in session with in-person teaching. The Ottawa County Jail also has reported several cases, although a sheriff department employee said safety precautions were taken and most of those affected had recovered by Friday.
Infections at state prisons continue to rise. There were 583 inmates in Oklahoma prisons with active cases by Thursday, the department said in its COVID-19 report. Previous week’s hotspots in Taft, with Eddie Warrior Correctional Center, and Lexington, which has a prison intake center, appear to be declining, at least for active cases. Still, the Oklahoma Department of Corrections said two inmates died in the past week due to COVID-19, a woman at Eddie Warrior and a man at Joseph Harp Correctional Center in Lexington.
City-county health departments in Oklahoma and Tulsa counties, which operate independently from the state health department, both said this week they would target testing and data transparency by ZIP code. The Tulsa Health Department is creating risk maps, while the Oklahoma City-County Health Department said it would partner with OU Medicine to offer mobile testing sites to ZIP codes with high positivity rates.
Since the state’s first reported case in March, Oklahoma has 67,642 confirmed cases as of Friday. The death toll was 888, with more than 700 of those deaths among people 65 and older.
Daily hospitalizations for COVID-19 have ranged from 462 to 509 in the past week across the state, with the bulk of those cases in the Tulsa and Oklahoma City areas.
Paul Monies has been a reporter with Oklahoma Watch since 2017 and covers state agencies and public health. Contact him at (571) 319-3289 or email@example.com.