Tennessee has seen a slight increase in its Covid-19 case rate and positivity rate, as well as a dramatic rise in hospitalizations, with numbers up over 50% since Oct. 1, Tennessee Health Commissioner Dr. Lisa Piercey announced Tuesday.
Dr. Piercey said the increase in hospitalizations is primarily because most of Tennessee’s cases are now coming from rural areas.
“As a general principle, our rural populations have more concentrations of older and sicker individuals, who are more likely to need hospitalization if they become ill,” the Health Commissioner said.
To help mitigate the rise in hospitalizations, the state is working with hospital partners on different targeted approaches, including additional funding for hospital staffing, and amping up Covid-19 specific nursing homes to reduce the load of nursing home patients on hospitals, Gov. Bill Lee said.
Dr. Piercey added that Tennessee’s alternative care sites continue to exercise and prepare in the catastrophic event the state would need to open one of the sites.