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COVID-19 claims 2 more lives in NWI
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COVID-19 claims 2 more lives in NWI

drive-thru COVID testing

Indiana State Department of Health Workers take samples Monday, May 4 in East Chicago, offering offering COVID-19 testing at East Chicago Central High School.

More than 12,000 Hoosiers have died from COVID-19 since March 2020. There are real names, faces and human stories behind that staggering number. This Sunday, The Times partners with 11 Indiana news agencies to share the stories of dozens of “Hoosiers We’ve Lost” in a special print section and online presentation. Watch for it Sunday.

Two additional Northwest Indiana residents were reported dead from COVID-19, updated health data provided Friday showed.

New deaths included one each in Lake and Jasper counties, according to updated statistics provided by the Indiana State Department of Health and the Porter County Health Department.

The deaths were among 28 more reported across Indiana. A total of 12,409 Hoosiers have died from the respiratory disease, ISDH reported.

Newly recorded deaths were reported between Nov. 25 and Wednesday. All data are provisional and subject to change as more information is reported to the state.

A total of 1,438 COVID-19 deaths have been reported in Northwest Indiana's five counties since the beginning of the pandemic, according to statistics from ISDH and the Porter County Health Department.

That total included 898 in Lake County, 262 in Porter County, 201 in LaPorte County, 33 in Newton County and 44 in Jasper County, following any corrections to the previous day's totals provided by ISDH.

State health officials listed 415 deaths statewide as probable, down five from the previous day. For probable deaths, there was no positive test on record, but a physician listed COVID-19 as a contributing cause, based on X-rays, scans and other clinical symptoms.

The total number of people across Northwest Indiana reported infected with COVID-19 rose to 79,471, following corrections to the previous day's totals.

That total included 48,974 in Lake County, 16,407 in Porter County, 9,898 in LaPorte County, 3,219 in Jasper County and 973 in Newton County, following corrections.

A total of 973 new cases were added across Indiana, pushing the state's count to 671,023. Newly recorded cases were reported between Saturday and Thursday.

Hospital Workers at Gary and Merrillville Methodist Hospitals administer vaccinations for region residents.

The Porter County Health Department listed one patient hospitalized and 15,878 people recovered.

Across the state line, Calumet City had 3,285 cases, up six from the previous day, and 35,989 tested. Lansing had 3,033 cases, up three, and 28,839 tested, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Positivity rates for all tests in NWI were at 4.6% in Lake County, up from 4.4% the day before; 4.1% in Porter County, down from 4.2%; 4.3% in LaPorte County, up from 3.9%; 4.3% in Newton County, down from 4.4%; and 6.4% in Jasper County, up from 6.2%.

Contact tracing can become difficult when the number exceeds 5%, and community spread is considered out of control when the positivity rate is greater than 10%.

The State Department of Health updated its vaccine dashboard Friday to reflect the number of Hoosiers who have received the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Those individuals are considered fully vaccinated, said State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box.

Through Friday, 792,217 Hoosiers have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, up from 771,091 the previous day, according to state health officials.

A total of 22,953 people have received the single-dose J&J vaccine. The number of people to receive the second of two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine was 769,264.

ISDH also reported that 1,230,710 Hoosiers have received their first of two required doses, up from 1,203,613.

There are COVID-19 testing sites available around the state, including at the Gary Health Department, 1145 W. Fifth Ave., and at the Porter County Expo Center, 215 E. Division Road, Valparaiso. For more locations, visit www.coronavirus.in.gov and click on the COVID-19 testing information link.

Hoosiers age 50 and up can now make an appointment to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, along with health care workers, long-term care residents and first responders. Appointments to receive the free COVID-19 immunization shot must be made online at ourshot.in.gov, or by calling 211.

Appointments can be scheduled at any of 55 hospitals and 91 local health departments across the state, with each site setting its own hours and days of service. All 92 Indiana counties have at least one vaccination site.

COVID-19: Hoosiers We've Lost

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