The number of active COVID-19 cases continues to rise at an alarming rate in Tipton County.
On Wednesday, Tipton County ranked second of the state’s 95 counties for cases per capita, which sit at 20.4 per 100,000. Only Crockett County, with 28.1, was ahead.
Last week, the county was the top in the country for the percentage the numbers had increased over a 14-day period. And while Tipton no longer leads the nation, its numbers are trending up for new confirmed cases.
Since last week, Tipton County’s active cases have more than doubled, increasing from 70 on July 13 to 141 on July 20. Active cases have not been this high since mid-February.
A month ago there were 11 active cases and for the four weeks prior active cases had been trending in the single digits or low teens.
On June 6, Tipton County had no active cases for the first time since March 19, 2020.
The positivity rate for the week ending July 17 was 14.9 percent. It hasn’t reached double digits since Feb. 20. The seven-day average for new cases increased from 7.7 new confirmed cases per day to 13.4, state data shows.
Health officials said the Delta variant is more contagious than the others, which can be one reason for the drastic increases. Low vaccination rates and decreased social distancing due to vacations and complacency are other factors.
The state is reporting 25.8 percent of Tipton Countians are vaccinated, and though the Delta variant can affect those vaccinated the infection is generally not as severe.
Tipton County is a low-vaccination county in a low-vaccination state. Across the country approximately 49 percent of Americans are fully vaccinated, a number that is only 38.6 percent in Tennessee. The state ranks 51st in percentage of people vaccinated of 56 U.S. states and territories.
According to Surgo Ventures’ COVID-19 Community Vulnerability Index, Tipton County is 79 percent more vulnerable than the rest of the counties in the United States. Tipton County’s vaccination percentage ranks 79th of 95.