January 8, 2021 9:08 AM
Hamilton County Moves to Red on State Department of Health’s Monitoring Scale
Social Gatherings Now Limited to 25 People.
The Indiana Department of Health (IDOH) has placed Hamilton County under RED under its county-based advisory level for determining community spread of COVID-19. RED means community spread is high and the county has a point score of 3.0 or higher on the IDOH’S monitoring scale. In order to reach a score of 3.0, a county must have 200 or more weekly cases per 100,000 residents – AND – a seven day all test positivity rate of 15% or greater.
“Unfortunately, the new designation doesn’t come as a huge surprise,” says Jason LeMaster, interim administrator for the Hamilton County Health Department. “Our local positivity rate has been fluctuating near the 15% threshold for days and we’re only just now seeing the swell of cases from over the holiday season.”
Under Governor Eric Holcomb’s Executive Order 20-50, a RED designation:
- Limits social gatherings to 25 people with no exceptions from the local health department;
- Limits attendance at recreational sporting events to participants, required personnel, parents, guardians, siblings, spouses, and minor children of participants or personnel;
- Allows for indoor dining, but encourages businesses to promote curbside pick-up or online ordering;
- Suggests K-12 school officials review and reevaluate their plans based on the recommendations of the Department of Education and IDOH;
- Suspends activities at senior centers;
- And allows hospitals, long term care, and other congregate settings to impose visitation limits.
Hamilton County must meet the metrics of ORANGE for two consecutive weeks before it will be allowed to move to back to that designation. In order to meet that criteria, Hamilton County must have 100-199 weekly cases per 100,000 residents – AND – a seven day all test positivity rate of 10-14.9%.
“That means Hamilton County will remain in RED for at least the next three weeks.” LeMaster adds. “The only way we can reverse course is to lower our numbers, so we’re asking the community to be incredibly vigilant. Wash your hands. Social Distance. Avoid indoor gatherings and get tested if you think you may have been exposed to the virus. We all have the power to right this ship.”