What Hoosier data experts take from reaching 100,000 COVID-19 cases

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INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana confirmed more than 100,000 cases of COVID-19 Monday.

Six months ago, a man traveling from Boston was the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Indiana.

Officials were hopeful it would never reach 100,000 cases, but estimates show it could have been so much worse.

“If we had done nothing, we had never shut down the economy, we had never shut down schools, we probably would have reached 100,000 way back in April,” said Brian Dixon, director of public health informatics at the Regenstrief Institute.

Compared to surrounding states, Indiana is in the middle when it comes to total positive cases. Ohio reports 130,000 cases, Michigan lists 117,000, Kentucky sits at 52,000 and Illinois has confirmed almost 250,000 COVID-19 cases.

Since population plays a role — numbers are only part of the story.

Overall, Indiana is doing about the same as others in the area.

“Our numbers are slightly different, but they are kind of moving in the same directions,” explained Dixon. “Deaths have continued to come down over the last several weeks.”

Though the 100,000 milestone does confirm 1.5% of Hoosiers have been infected with COVID-19, the Regenstrief Institute believes that number is 10 times higher.

“Just because in the beginning it was hard for people to get tested, and still not everybody who has the infection is getting tested,” said Dixon.

Even so, that means about 85% of Hoosiers are still susceptible to the virus.

“Which means that we have to continue to be vigilant with social distancing and wearing face masks and taking precautions to keep more people from getting the disease,” said Dixon.

The Regenstrief Institute does expect a small spike in the numbers after this Labor Day weekend is complete.

Scientists do think it will stabilize again before rising in the colder months due to people being indoors more often.

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