Nashville-based health experts shared new localized outbreak projections Thursday morning and said social distancing appears to be reducing the spread of the coronavirus.
They say the city and state may be on a track to keep up with the pandemic, in terms of hospital bed and ventilator capacity, but only if strong precautions continue.
Cases are still rising.
“The curves that were originally being predicted have come down,” said Edmund Jackson, chief data officer for HCA Healthcare.
“This is really good news,” said John Graves, an associate professor at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. “We’re finally seeing, as a result of the social distancing now being practiced by our fellow Tennesseans, evidence of Tennessee, at the statewide level, starting to remove itself from that initial exponential trajectory.”
Graves said the localized model anticipates a peak in early or mid-May, with the most optimistic scenario showing 3,000 hospitalizations at that time. But peak hospitalizations could top 5,000 and overwhelm the system, he said.
More details are expected in a report coming tomorrow.
Nashville also reported a 73-year-old man as the 13th victim of COVID-19 in the city.
Davidson County was unable to report its total case count Thursday because of a statewide computer outage, but officials say there are 59 people hospitalized.
The city says 226 people visited Metro’s three community assessment sites on Wednesday. In the past nine days, the city has screened more than 1,500 people and tested 960.