Coronavirus update: Bi-county region hits 25K cases

Model of a coronavirus cell (CDC via AP, File)

KENNEWICK, Wash. — After taking President’s Day off, the Benton-Franklin Health District (BFHD) provided a four-day coronavirus statistical update from Saturday, Feb. 13 through Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021. Though the number of cases added in the last four days is slim compared with the height of the pandemic, the bi-county region hit a noteworthy landmark.

According to today’s update, Benton County added 82 cases over four days for a total of 14,319 coronavirus cases confirmed to date. Franklin County added 55 cases over four days for a total of 10,684 confirmed cases. Combined, the bi-county region has confirmed 25,003 cases to date, eclipsing the 25,000 case mark.

Community testing rates hold firm as the CBC West coronavirus testing site returns from a brief halt due to weather conditions. From Jan. 24 to Feb. 6, the CBC West testing site returned a 15.71% coronavirus positivity rate. This was an improvement from the range of statistics reported in the prior week.

PREVIOUS CORONAVIRUS UPDATE: Death toll rises as 113 cases are reported

Changes to Vital Statisics Laws changed the way that the Benton-Franklin Health Disitrict reports coronavirus-related deaths in the region. They’re now updated once weekly on Fridays without information regarding underlying health conditions out of respect for those who’ve passed. The bi-county death toll stands at 278 with 187 community members lost in Benton County and 91 community members lost in Franklin County.

Hospitaliation rates have hovered above public health officials’ goal of sub-10% COVID-related hospitalizations, but haven’t quite reached that mark in recent weeks. Of the 392 patients currently being treated at hospitals in the bi-county region, 44 are being treated for compliations with COVID-19. They account for 11.2% of hospitalizations, which is 1.3% above the target goal.

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Vaccinations have been highly successful at the Benton County Fairgrounds. Called the most efficient mass vaccination site in the state by Washington Secretary of Health Dr. Umair Shah, over 10,000 vaccinations have occured at the location to date.

Anyone who recieved a vaccination must prepare themselves to make an appointment for their second dose either this week or next week at the mass vaccination site.

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