NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The Tennessee Department of Health has confirmed additional cases and deaths related to COVID-19 across the state on Tuesday, August 18.
The health department reported 1,034 new cases, bringing the state to 135,778 total cases, a 1% day-to-day increase since Monday. Of the total cases, 133,281 are confirmed and 2,497 are probable.
Tuesday’s new case update is the state’s third lowest in the month of August.
Tennessee’s seven-day new cases average now sits at 1,552 additional cases per day, up slightly from Monday.
TDH also confirmed 39 additional deaths, making Tuesday the second-highest single-day increase and bringing Tennessee up to 1,426 total deaths.
Out of the confirmed positive cases, 96,896 have recovered, an increase of 2,084 recoveries.
The latest number of hospitalizations went up by 100 to 5,981. A note on the department’s website states this total is an indication of the number of patients that were ever hospitalized during their illness and not an indication of the number of patients currently hospitalized.
Of the 134,744 cases, 65,331 are male (48%), 68,091 are female (51%), and 1,322 are pending (1%).
Tennessee has conducted 1,891,875 tests with 1,756,097 negative results. The percentage for positive cases remains around 7.2%. Tuesday’s update added 23,114 tests to the state’s total.
COVID-19 in Nashville
Earlier Tuesday, Metro Public Health Department officials reported 24,514 cases of COVID-19 in Davidson County. Officials also released multiple COVID-19 “heatmaps” Tuesday showing where in Davidson County cases of coronavirus are concentrated.
During his bi-weekly news conference last week, Mayor John Cooper announced bars and limited-service restaurants in Nashville and Davidson County can reopen Monday with a maximum of 25 customers.
Bar owners told News 2 that, while they’re happy to get the ball rolling to reopen, limiting capacity to only 25 people is not going to give them any profits. Some bars are choosing to stay closed because of capacity limitations.
Nearly 3,000 warnings and 25 citations were given out in order to enforce the mask mandate in Nashville over the weekend, according to Metro police. Two restaurants were also cited for violating health order, but police didn’t say what the specific violations were.
Schools Moving Forward
On July 28, Governor Bill Lee announced the State of Tennessee’s recommendations to reopen schools for the 2020-2021 school year. The governor’s plan for reopening schools has received criticism from some state leaders.
Last week, the Department of Education released a new online dashboard to help track a school’s status on offering in-person learning, virtual learning, or a hybrid. Though one of the initiatives is already being removed. On August 14, TDOE Commissioner Penny Schwinn sent a letter to lawmakers stating Gov. Bill Lee asked the department to remove the guidance on the plans for the child well-being checks.
News 2 digs deeper into how schools are moving forward safely for the new academic year. See how other districts around Middle Tennessee are handling everything from classroom concerns to the future of sports in our special series. Click here to see more.
COVID-19 & Sports
High School Sports
Gov. Lee announced Executive Order No. 55 would include Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association member schools in an exception to contact sports restrictions. He officially signed the order on July 31.
A day after Lee’s announcement, school leaders in Davidson sent out a letter to all schools in the county asking to cancel all sports and extracurricular activities until after Labor Day.
On August 10, Cheatham County Central High School announced the football team had two confirmed COVID-19 cases. CCCHS has stopped football practices for now, and are scheduled to resume August 19.
Last week, the Big 10 and Pac-12 became the first two Power Five conferences to postpone fall sports. Later that day, both the SEC and ACC released statements announcing, as of now, their plans to stay on course with their current plans for the season.
On August 14, the Ohio Valley Conference became the final FCS conference to pull the plug on the fall season when it announced it would postpone fall sports action and championships.
Mayor Cooper announced Tuesday that no spectators will be allowed at Nissan Stadium in Nashville though at least September, including for Nashville SC and Tennessee Titans games.
It’s a season of change for football. From the NFL to high school, News 2 digs deeper into the impact COVID-19 is having on the game.
Click here for our special reports
Tennessee’s Coronavirus Response
Last week, Vanderbilt released a new modeling report which shows the relationship between face mask mandates and hospitalization rates in Tennessee.
On August 14, Lee and the Financial Stimulus Accountability Group announced new and expanded financial relief programs for small businesses, agribusinesses, displaced workers, and the tourism industry through the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund.
In June, the Tennessee Department of Health announced changes to its format for sharing COVID-19 data. The department’s total number of cases and total deaths now include both laboratory-confirmed cases and probable cases as defined in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention surveillance case definitions. – Learn more about the changes here.