Indiana reports 15 more COVID-19 deaths

By The Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS — Fifteen more Indiana residents have died from COVID-19, state health officials said Thursday, a day after statewide findings in an ongoing study showed that the virus' spread has lessened in recent weeks across Indiana.

The 15 newly reported COVID-19 deaths bring Indiana's total confirmed deaths from the respiratory disease caused by the virus to 2,304, the Indiana State Department of Health said.

The state agency has also recorded 187 fatalities considered coronavirus-related by doctors but without confirmation of the illness from test results. Those deaths give Indiana 2,491‬ confirmed or presumed COVID-19 deaths.

The state health department also reported 584 more coronavirus cases Thursday, raising Indiana's total confirmed cases to 41,438.

A study released Wednesday by Indiana University’s Fairbanks School of Public Health compared a random sample of Hoosiers tested in mid-April to another group of Indiana residents tested during the first week of June.

Those results show fewer people in the study's second phase tested positive for an active infection, while more displayed antibodies to the virus, suggesting they had been infected in the past and recovered.

Among more than 3,600 people tested in June, 0.6% were infected, compared with the 1.7% infection rate seen in the earlier testing of about 4,600 people. About 1.5% of those tested in June were positive for antibodies showing they were previously exposed, compared with 1.1 % in the earlier testing.

The results suggest that more people have been infected than are currently infected — a sign that the virus’ spread is decreasing.

But State Health Commissioner Dr. Kris Box cautioned that Indiana still has active transmission and Hoosiers must continue to protect themselves and Indiana’s most vulnerable through social distancing, mask-wearing and hand-washing.

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