(INDIANAPOLIS) – Indiana is bracing for the coronavirus pandemic to get worse.
Between Sunday and Wednesday, the number of confirmed Indiana cases doubled. In the next two days, it doubled again, to 79 confirmed cases in 27 counties.
State health commissioner Kristina Box warns the numbers will continue to rise, due both to the virus’s spread and an increase in the state’s testing capacity.
Indiana has already closed schools and casinos, and limited bars and restaurants to carryout and delivery. Governor Holcomb says there’s no need yet for more closures, but says he’ll be constantly reevaluating as the situation develops, based on advice from a coronavirus task force headed by Box.
Box warns hospitals’ supplies of protective gear like masks and gowns are dwindling. She says the state received a fresh shipment of supplies Friday and will be distributing them to the hospitals most in need.
Box and Holcomb say it remains critical for people to observe the social distancing recommendations
they’ve been emphasizing for a week now, to slow the spread of the virus enough that hospitals can keep up. “My plea and my hope is that we all understand the gravity of what’s surrounding us on a 24-hour basis,” Holcomb says. “The more people practice what we’re preaching, the faster we’ll get through this.”