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GA Coronavirus Progress Touted By Kemp During Wednesday Briefing

ATLANTA, GA — Gov. Brian Kemp took a victory lap during his coronavirus briefing Wednesday morning, touting Georgia’s 64-percent reduction in new COVID-19 since a peak on July 24.

“We needed Georgians to be part of the solution and not part of the problem, and I’m very proud of the fact that Georgians have stepped up to the plate and have done the right thing,” Kemp said. “The key for now is for us to keep doing this. We cannot take our foot off the gas.”

Both Kemp and Dr. Katherine Toomey, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Health, urged Georgians to “wear a mask, watch your distance, wash your hands and follow the guidance” of health experts.

Kemp noted other signs of progress as well, with confirmed hospitalizations down 60 percent from their peak and COVID-19 cases comprising only 8.8 percent of Georgia’s total hospital population.

Kemp noted that Georgia’s unemployment rate is below the national average and that the state has maintained its triple-A bond rating through the pandemic.

“We have worked hard to protect people and their paychecks,” Kemp said, “and, yes, we can do both.”

Kemp sidestepped a reporter’s question about what kind of example he’d set by attending last week’s Faith and Freedom Coalition conference, in which most attendees were close and maskless.

Instead, Kemp pointed out that at least he was wearing a mask and that participants in similar events — including “demonstrations” and “protests” — have First Amendment rights.

But when another reporter challenged Kemp’s positive outlook by pointing out that the most recent seven-day average of new COVID-19 cases had risen slightly, Kemp pushed back

“You know, cherry picking the worst figures like you’ve done in the past is a little disingenuous to the public,” Kemp answered, urging the public to bypass the media and read Toomey’s reports firsthand.

Kemp ended the briefing with a pitch to vote.

“We have one of the greatest states in the country for access to the ballot,” Kemp said. “We’re a state that wants to make it easy to vote and hard to cheat.”

GEORGIA CORONAVIRUS NUMBERS FOR OCT. 7, 2020

The Georgia Department of Public Health in Atlanta reported a total of 326,142 confirmed cases of COVID-19 at 2:50 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 7. According to the health department’s website, that includes 1,554 newly confirmed cases over the last 24 hours.

Georgia also reported 7,259 deaths so far from COVID-19, with 32 more deaths recorded in the last 24 hours. In addition, the state reported 29,308 hospitalizations — 154 more than the day before — and 5,439 admissions so far to intensive-care units.

No information is available from Georgia about how many patients have recovered.

Counties in or near metro Atlanta and other metropolitan areas continue to have the highest number of positives, with Fulton County still in the lead.

  1. Fulton County: 28,392 cases — 134 new

  2. Gwinnett County: 28,328 cases — 121 new

  3. Cobb County: 20,224 cases — 104 new

  4. DeKalb County:

Louisiana coronavirus: 1,052 more cases reported Wednesday; see latest data | Coronavirus

The Louisiana Department of Health reported 1,052 more coronavirus cases and nine more deaths in its daily noon update Wednesday.

The number of hospitalizations declined by 15, and the number of patients in need of ventilators increased by seven.

The number of newly-reported cases includes some backlog.

“LDH is reporting 1,052 new cases, including a backlog of 406 cases with collection dates before 9/16,” the agency wrote on its dashboard.

Here are a few key statewide statistics as of Wednesday:

— Total cases: 170,097

— Total deaths: 5,411

— Currently hospitalized: 552

— Currently on ventilators: 78

— Presumed recovered: 157,873 as of October 5 (updated weekly)

— Probable cases: 2,538 as of October 7 (updated weekly)

Note: The Advocate and The Times-Picayune staff calculates daily case count increases based on the difference between today’s total and yesterday’s total of confirmed coronavirus cases. The Louisiana Department of Health releases a daily case count on Twitter based on the deletion of duplicate cases. That case count can be different than the one listed here.

You can view more graphs and charts breaking down the data by clicking here.

Louisiana began reopening for Phase 1 on May 15-16 then moved to Phase 2 on June 5. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards extended Louisiana’s Phase 2 restrictions twice in August before moving the state to Phase 3 on Sept. 11.

This is a developing story. More details and analysis to come.

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Here’s what’s happening Wednesday with COVID-19 in the Chicago area

Illinois officials announced that a resurgence in coronavirus rates in a northwest Illinois region that includes Rockford and Northern Illinois University will result in a return to tighter restrictions aimed at curbing the disease’s spread.



a group of people sitting at a table with a bunch of stuffed animals: Mourners add to a memorial on Sept. 9, 2020, during a vigil in memory of Dajore Wilson, 8, near where she was killed at 47th Street and South Union Avenue in the Canaryville neighborhood.


© Brian Cassella / Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS
Mourners add to a memorial on Sept. 9, 2020, during a vigil in memory of Dajore Wilson, 8, near where she was killed at 47th Street and South Union Avenue in the Canaryville neighborhood.

The news comes as the state reported 1,362 newly diagnosed cases and 23 additional confirmed deaths of people with COVID-19, raising the statewide tally to 291,001 known cases and 8,637 deaths.

COVID-19 in Illinois by the numbers: Here’s a daily update on key metrics in your area

COVID-19 cases in Illinois by ZIP code: Search for your neighborhood

Chicago’s travel quarantine list: Here’s what you need to know to avoid a large fine



a traffic light at night: The setting sun is is seen along East Madison Street before the fall equinox on Sept. 21, 2020, in Chicago.


© Armando L. Sanchez / Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS
The setting sun is is seen along East Madison Street before the fall equinox on Sept. 21, 2020, in Chicago.

Illinois coronavirus graphs: The latest data on deaths, confirmed cases, tests and more

Here’s what’s happening Wednesday with COVID-19 in the Chicago area and Illinois:

7:10 a.m.: Lightfoot to hold final online budget town hall with city officials

Mayor Lori Lightfoot and City Budget Director Susie Park were scheduled to hold a final online town hall Wednesday regarding Chicago’s 2021 budget.

The city is running an $800 million budget deficit for 2020 following tax shortfalls because of the coronavirus pandemic and facing a hole of about $1.2 billion for 2021.



a person preparing food in a kitchen: Kelly Helgesen of Takeaway Bagel makes sourdough bagels at Superkhana International on Sept. 19, 2020, in Chicago.


© Armando L. Sanchez / Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS
Kelly Helgesen of Takeaway Bagel makes sourdough bagels at Superkhana International on Sept. 19, 2020, in Chicago.

Since late August, the city has held a series of online town halls and gathered more than 38,000 survey responses about residents’ budget concerns and spending priorities, according to a news release from the mayor’s office. Wednesday evening’s town hall will be livestreamed on Facebook from 6-7 p.m.



Isabel Aguilar and her son, Diego, 5, create a poster at a rally to protest the possible future redevelopment of the Discount Mall in the Little Village neighborhood on Sept. 16, 2020, in Chicago.


© John J. Kim / Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS
Isabel Aguilar and her son, Diego, 5, create a poster at a rally to protest the possible future redevelopment of the Discount Mall in the Little Village neighborhood on Sept. 16, 2020, in Chicago.

Lightfoot is to detail more of her plans for the 2021 budget when she gives her annual budget address in mid-October. — Chicago Tribune staff

6:46 a.m.: COVID-19 cases traced to adult volleyball games at Gages Lake restaurant

Almost 200 players and spectators were potentially exposed recently to COVID-19 during adult volleyball games at a Gages Lake restaurant and bar, with 14 testing positive for the virus as the result of an investigation by the Lake County Health Department.

The health department began its investigation on Sept. 23 after investigators and contact tracers identified people who watched or played volleyball with symptoms of the coronavirus pandemic at Jesse Oaks Food & Drink, according to a department press