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Indiana coronavirus updates for Friday, Sept. 10, 2021

The latest updates on the COVID-19 pandemic from Friday, Sept. 10, 2021.

INDIANAPOLIS — Here are Friday's latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic, including the latest news on COVID-19 vaccinations and testing in Indiana.

Registrations for the vaccine are now open for Hoosiers 12 and older through the Indiana State Department of Health. This story will be updated over the course of the day with more news on the COVID-19 pandemic.

RELATED: Here's everything we know about the COVID-19 vaccine

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Expanded COVID-19 testing

The Indiana Department of Health is partnering with Gravity Diagnostics to increase free COVID-19 testing across the state.

Gravity will provide the staff and supplies needed to collect and analyze up to 5,000 COVID-19 tests per day, including rapid antigen and PCR tests. The increased testing could lead to an additional 45 sites around the state.

Part of the agreement will allow for voluntary testing in schools. Gravity will coordinate with schools directly to determine their interest in testing. Details are still being finalized on how the testing in schools will work.

Testing sites will be posted at www.coronavirus.in.gov and at https://gravitydiagnostics.com/covid-19-testing-drive-thru-locations/.

State reports 5,476 new cases, 22 deaths and 5,767 more full vaccinations

The Indiana State Department of Health reported Friday that 5,767 more Hoosiers have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

ISDH reported 5,476 new positive cases, along with 22 additional deaths that occurred between Aug. 25 and Thursday. 14,330 residents have now died from COVID-19.

The number of positive cases reported now stands at 899,844 since the beginning of the pandemic.

84 Purdue students face discipline for ignoring COVID-19 testing requirement

Purdue University said Friday that 84 students are receiving disciplinary action for failing to comply with the Protect Purdue COVID-19 surveillance testing requirement.

Three weeks into the semester, the university released an update that showed the vast majority of students are in compliance and meeting the Protect Purdue guidelines by either uploading their vaccine status or submitting to regular surveillance testing.   

After the first week of testing, the university reported more than 700 students were out of compliance. But the school said ongoing communication with students in that group has resulted in a majority uploading their vaccine documentation or fulfilling their testing requirement.

GermanFest to require proof of vaccination for attendees 

Citing the COVID-19 delta variant surge, the Athenaeum Foundation announced Friday new requirements for admission to the upcoming GermanFest on Saturday, Oct. 9.

Upon presenting their ticket for admission, event attendees will need to present vaccine verification, or a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of the event, in one of the following ways:

  1. Upload negative test results or your vaccination card through the Bindle Health app and present a verified entry pass on a smartphone.
  2. Bring a physical vaccination card accompanied with a photo ID.   

Children under the age of 12, who are not eligible for vaccines, do not need to show a negative test result to attend GermanFest and are strongly encouraged to wear a mask. 

The annual outdoor event will take place between noon and 8 p.m. on Michigan and New Jersey Streets, surrounding the Athenaeum. 

In its announcement, the Athenaeum referred to other local organizations, such as Live Nation, The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, The Cabaret and HI-FI as also sharing this new protocol to protect event guests.

A full GermanFest health and safety policy and FAQ can be found at athenaeumfoundation.org/germanfestcovid19policy.

To learn more about the Bindle Health app, including where to download the app and how to upload vaccine and testing information, visit joinbindle.com/learnmore

To purchase advance tickets to GermanFest, please visit:  athenaeumindy.org.

Gov. Holcomb responds to Pres. Biden's vaccine mandates

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb has responded to President Joe Biden's vaccine mandates that were announced Thursday.

Holcomb released the following statement: 

“I believe the vaccine is the number one tool that will protect us and our loved ones against COVID-19. It is the tool that will end the pandemic. However, I strongly believe it’s not the state or federal government’s role to issue a vaccine mandate upon citizens and private businesses. This is the approach our administration has taken all along. The announcement from President Biden is a bridge too far. Private businesses should be able to look at their own mission, their staff and their goals and make the decision best for them that will keep their doors open. I believe it is fundamentally a citizen’s right to choose whether or not to get the vaccine. While I wish everyone would get the vaccine, we are a country built on this exact type of freedom.”

RELATED: Indiana AG prepared to file suit over Biden vaccine mandates

RELATED: Biden announces new vaccine mandates affecting 100 million Americans

Biden said the federal government will mandate that all employers with more than 100 workers require employees to be vaccinated or test for COVID-19 weekly.

Biden announces new vaccine mandates affecting 100 million Americans

In his most forceful pandemic actions and words, President Joe Biden on Thursday ordered sweeping new federal vaccine requirements for as many as 100 million Americans in an all-out effort to increase COVID-19 vaccinations and curb the surging delta variant.

Speaking at the White House, Biden sharply criticized the tens of millions of Americans who are not yet vaccinated, despite months of availability and incentives.

“We’ve been patient. But our patience is wearing thin, and your refusal has cost all of us," he said, all but biting off his words. The unvaccinated minority “can cause a lot of damage, and they are.” 

The expansive rules mandate that all employers with more than 100 workers require them to be vaccinated or test for the virus weekly, affecting about 80 million Americans. And the roughly 17 million workers at health facilities that receive federal Medicare or Medicaid also will have to be fully vaccinated.

Biden is also requiring vaccination for employees of the executive branch and contractors who do business with the federal government — with no option to test out. That covers several million more workers.

Biden announced the new requirements in a Thursday afternoon address from the White House as part of a new “action plan” to address the latest rise in coronavirus cases and the stagnating pace of COVID-19 shots.

Click here to read more about Thursday's announcement.

Latest US, world numbers

There have been more than 40.6 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States as of 3:30 a.m. Friday, according to Johns Hopkins University. There have been more than 654,500 deaths recorded in the U.S.

Worldwide, there have been more than 223.18 million confirmed coronavirus cases with more than 4.6 million deaths. More than 5.59 billion vaccine doses have been administered worldwide.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness like pneumonia, or death.

This week's mobile vaccine clinics in central Indiana

Friday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.:
Excel Center
4200 S. East St., Indianapolis

Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.:
Trinity Lutheran Church
8540 E. 16th St., Indianapolis

Moderna working on 1-dose COVID vaccine booster and flu shot

Moderna announced Thursday that it is working on a one-dose vaccine that would serve as a COVID-19 booster shot and also offer protection from the seasonal flu.

The company is calling the new vaccine under development mRNA-1073. 

"Today, we are announcing the first step in our novel respiratory vaccine program with the development of a single dose vaccine that combines a booster against COVID-19 and a booster against [the] flu," Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel said in a statement. "We believe our mRNA platform can solve the world’s greatest health challenges, from diseases impacting millions, to ultra-rare diseases impacting dozens, to medicines personalized down to the individual level."

Federal officials are moving ahead with plans to begin administering booster shots of the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines to boost protection against the more transmissible delta variant of the virus. 

Last month, Biden announced plans to make them available beginning on Sept. 20, but only the Pfizer vaccine will likely have received regulatory approval for a third dose by that time. Federal regulators are seeking additional data from Moderna that will likely delay its booster approval until October.