Alabama COVID numbers dropping but deaths remain too high

Published: Sep. 27, 2021 at 6:43 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Alabama is continuing to see improving numbers when it comes to daily positive COVID cases of and hospitalizations, but Alabama health leaders are not declaring any sort of victory.

Alabama health leaders are applauding the downward trend in numbers but COVID deaths have not seen a steady drop, which concerns them. According to the latest Risk Map, for the first time in a month there are more counties not listed in the high risk of COVID transmission, and seven counties are listed as significant or moderate chance of transmission.

“Things are moving in the right direction. They clearly are. Whether that is due to the virus’s natural history or human intervention I don’t know,” said Dr. Don Williamson with the Alabama Hospital Association.

State health leaders said the pandemic is far from over.

“We have to be very cautious because we are dealing with the very transmissible Delta variant,” said Dr. Karen Landers with ADPH.

The biggest concern when it comes to COVID deaths is that the numbers are not dropping dramatically. Alabama’s positivity rate is down from 24% to 13% but health leaders said It needs to be under 5%.

“Of the last now almost four weeks we’ve had only about five days where we had fewer than 40 deaths a day. It has been running the last few days in the 30′s,” Williamson said.

Over the last 10 days there have been 758 deaths in Alabama. While the number of COVID cases has dropped to around 2,500, the ICU are still steady. Past COVID surges saw numbers drop quickly, but that is not true with the Delta variant.

“The human tragedy of this will continue until we really get through this,” Williamson said.

Dr. Williamson said that will probably mean until late October.

Williamson also said hospital numbers are dropping for several reasons. The Alabama Hospital Association executive said the reasons are fewer COVID cases, the use of monoclonal antibody treatments and, sadly, deaths.

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