Another 70% Rise in Reported COVID-19 Cases Includes First Nursing Home Resident, First Child

Mar 18, 2020

As of Wednesday morning, Oklahoma was at 29 reported cases of COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus.

That was a more than 70% increase from Tuesday, when the state had 17 cases. Oklahoma has now seen back-to-back days of reported cases increasing by roughly 70%. The number of reported cases was at 10 on Monday.

The state's first case in a nursing home was reported. A resident of Ponca City Nursing and Rehabilitation was tested after being hospitalized in the last week. One other resident who was in close contact with the infected person has been tested, but results are not available yet.

Care Providers Oklahoma President and CEO Steve Buck said nursing home workers are well-trained on preventing the spread of infection.

"It is part of our licensure requirement that each of our providers have underlying infection control approaches that they are prepared to deliver in times of infection," Buck said.

Buck said Care Providers Oklahoma is working with the Oklahoma State Department of Health to implement new federal guidance on restricting visitation and group dining in long-term care facilities. 

An infant also appears to be among the 12 new reported cases. State health department figures show one reported case in the 0–4 age range, and the new age range of all reported cases is now 0–75 years old.

The 18–49 age group has the most reported cases with 13, followed by the 50–64 age group, which has 10. There are still no reported cases among 5- to 17-year-olds.

Tulsa County has its fourth case of COVID-19, a man in his 50s. How he contracted the illness is still under investigation.

Three previous reported cases in Tulsa County were all travel-related.

No new counties reported cases of COVID-19.

Health officials said they expected the number of reported cases to increase as more tests are done. More than 400 results have come back, and 110 people currently have results pending.

There have not been any reported deaths in the state.