Oklahoma Sets Record for New COVID-19 Cases with 228, Tulsa County Pulling Away as Leader in Cases

Jun 16, 2020

Credit Department of Defense

The Oklahoma State Department of Health reported 228 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, the most in a single day so far.

The state now has 8,645 total cases of the illness, and its seven-day average of new cases has surged from 69 on June 1 to 183 as of Tuesday.

Tulsa County had 76 new cases on Tuesday, its third-highest increase to date and in just the past week. The county now has 1,729 total cases of COVID-19, most in the state. Oklahoma County has the second-highest number of total cases, 1,673, an increase of 30 from Monday.

Four deaths that happened between June 7 and Sunday were reported on Tuesday. Two deaths were in Tulsa County: a man between 18 and 35 years old, and a man 65 or older. Tulsa County now has 64 deaths, tied with  Oklahoma County for the most in the state.

COVID-19 has now killed a total of 363 Oklahomans. The illness has hospitalized 1,130, with 172 currently in the hospital.

The state health department reported 137 additional patients had recovered on Tuesday, bringing the total number of people recovered to 6,765. Patients are considered to have recovered from COVID-19 if they did not die, are not currently hospitalized and it has been at least 14 days since their symptoms began. Symptoms, however, have been known to linger for several weeks.

Active cases in Oklahoma continue to climb and are at 1,517.

Dr. Dale Bratzler with OU Medicine said the state still meets federal hospital bed and equipment availability criteria for reopening.

"Where we don’t meet the criteria now are the fact that we have a rising number of new cases — so, we went from 70 a day two weeks ago up to 170 a day based on the current daily averages — and the percentage of tests that are being done that are positive has gone up," Bratzler said.

The health department reported Tuesday that 263,882 specimens have been tested for COVID-19, and the state's positive rate is 3.7%. That number is based on all tests.

Recent testing numbers have remained steady, and daily positive test rates have risen as high as 6.7% in the past week.

Bratzler said especially in younger age groups, people have become lax about following practices to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, like wearing masks in public and staying six feet from others.