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Among the five more deaths statewide over the last 24 hours from COVID-19, one was a male in Oklahoma County in the 18-35 age group.

It was the first in that age range in the state thus far.

That latest news from the Oklahoma State Health Department (OSDH) as of 7:00 a.m. Monday contradicts the common impression among young adults that the disease is only deadly to those over 65.

Across the state in the 18-35 age group, 232 cases have tested positive which comes close to the next age range, 36-49 which has 276.

Adding all age groups testing positive for COVID-19, 340 have been hospitalized.

Deaths continue

The Oklahoma County male between 18-35 is counted among 11 Oklahoma County residents who have succumbed to the COVID-19 disease so far.

And, 51 deaths are reported statewide by the agency as of Monday morning.

Cases testing positive

Oklahoma County now has the most cases that have been reported positive. The county’s 279 are among the 1,347 cases in the state so far.

By comparison, Tulsa County had the second-highest number of cases at 249 and Cleveland County comes in third with 180 cases.

Data Source: Acute Disease Service, Oklahoma State Department of Health as of 2020-04-06 at 7:00 AM.

Positives-negatives

Since private labs have been reporting positive tests regularly but not negatives, the number of positives reported by OSDH is far more reliable than the negatives.

But, the OSDH is attempting to change that.

March 31 OSDH and Commissioner of Health Gary Cox sent a letter reminding private labs in Oklahoma that earlier in that month the state had designated COVID-19 “as a disease that is immediately reportable to OSDH.”

In that same letter Cox reminded the private labs that they could be subject to civil and criminal penalties for failure to report COVID-19 testing results to the OSDH.

“The Oklahoma State Department of Health is committed to delivering as much transparent data to the public on COVID-19 as state and federal law allows, and it is critical for private labs to help us achieve this mission by reporting daily to the agency both the positive and negative COVID-19 test results to achieve a complete picture of this virus’ impact,” said Cox.

Background

The following is provide by the OSDH: https://coronavirus.health.ok.gov

COVID-19 is a virus identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China in 2019 and has since spread globally into a pandemic. Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. While roughly 80% of cases report mild symptoms, some progress into severe pneumonia and multi-organ failure and can lead to death. Current data indicates the risk of death for those contracting COVID-19 notably increases for individuals above the age of 60 or for individuals with autoimmune conditions. On January 11, 2020, the first set of individuals in the United States tested positive for COVID-19. The virus has since spread across all 50 states and the number of individuals testing positive for COVID-19 continues to rapidly grow each day.


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