Indiana Daily Student

Monroe County reported 12 new cases Wednesday; Indiana to move to Stage 4.5 on Friday

There were 12 new COVID-19 cases reported in Monroe County on Wednesday, according to data from the Indiana State Health Department.

The spike comes after over a week of increase in the average number of new cases reported a day. This is the second-highest number of cases reported in a single day since the beginning of the virus’s spread in March. 

The highest number of cases in a single day was 13 cases June 16, and the third-highest number of cases was 11 on April 9.

Gov. Eric Holcomb also announced today that Indiana will delay the start of Stage 5 in the state’s reopening plan. Instead, the state will move into “Stage 4.5,” an intermediate stage that will give people more freedom than Stage 4 but will still restrict the gathering of people through July 17.Elkhart County, the exception, will remain in Stage 4 through July 17.

In Stage 4.5, fairs, festivals and parades will be allowed, but people must be able to socially distance. If events are indoor, the space can only be filled to 50% capacity. There must be sanitation measures in place, and facial coverings are strongly recommended indoors and outdoors.

Conventions will be allowed in Stage 4.5 but limited to 250 people. Attendees must be able to socially distance, and sanitation measures must be in place. People are again strongly recommended to wear facial coverings.

Summer camps may begin in Stage 4.5 under some regulations. Employees’ health will be assessed daily, and campers’ health will be screened as well. Adults and children over the age of 2 are recommended to wear masks.

Horse racing is also allowed in Stage 4.5, and audiences will be allowed to attend at 50% capacity.

Access to state government buildings will still be limited to appointments only, and state employees, contractors and vendors must wear masks inside state buildings.

Monroe County health administrator Penny Caudill said Wednesday that Monroe County will have a new order out Thursday.

Correction: A previous version of this graphic mislabeled the start date of Stage 4.5, which will begin July 4. The IDS regrets this error.

Graphic by Carson TerBush

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