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COVID-19 metrics mostly holding steady in Roanoke area

COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in the Roanoke area have been holding relatively steady for the past few weeks. There have been some upticks, especially at a statewide level, though.

The Roanoke City-Alleghany Health District recorded 169 new cases over the past week, about a dozen more than the week before. That's well below the numbers reported during the winter surge when the district was recording thousands of new cases every week.

The number of district resident hospitalized for complications related to COVID-19 has been holding in the single digits, according to district director Doctor Cynthia Morrow. "All of our indicators are showing a relatively steady state for now. But they are inching up," Morrow noted. "All of our indicators are inching up. So we’re just going to have to remain vigilant."

Statewide Cases 4.26
Virginia Dept. of Health
A graph of new COVID-19 cases over the past 13 weeks

Morrow said wastewater testing in the district has shown a slight increase in the presence of COVID-19.

And at a statewide level, the testing positivity rate has more than doubled since the beginning of the month. It's risen from 3.3% on April 1 to 8.3% Tuesday. Morrow said it's important to consider a number of indicators and not just focus on testing positivity. It can be influenced by the number of tests being conducted and why people are seeking testing.

The Roanoke City-Alleghany District recorded five additional deaths over the past week, bringing its total to 991.

David Seidel is proud to lead the journalists at Radio IQ and WVTF as news director. David joined the newsroom in May 2017 and brings more than 20 years of experience in broadcast journalism in Virginia. Prior to joining Radio IQ David was an assistant news director, assignment manager and producer at WDBJ Television in Roanoke. He also worked as a reporter for WHSV Television in Harrisonburg. David graduated from Washington and Lee University in Lexington with degrees in journalism and history.