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Indiana coronavirus updates for Monday, January 18, 2021

The latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic from Monday, Jan. 18.

INDIANAPOLIS — Monday's latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic.

ISDH daily update

The Indiana State Department of Health is reporting 2,548 newly confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 30 more deaths. Indiana has recorded a total of 592,709 positive cases and 8,966 confirmed deaths.

There have been a total of 6,462,786 tests administered to 2,839,505 Hoosiers.

From Jan. 5 to Jan. 11, the seven-day positivity rate was 12.5 perfect for all tests and 22.5 percent for unique individuals.

Hospitalizations have been trending down since peaking at 3,460 patients on Nov. 30. However, hospitals are still feeling the stress of COVID, as there were 2,386 hospitalized COVID patients across the state Sunday. The state has less than 30 percent of its ICU beds available.

March For Life switches to car parade

Friday's scheduled March for Life and Rally has been changed to a car procession past the Capitol followed by a parking lot rally in Carmel.

Right to Life of Indianapolis issued a statement about the reason for the change which said, in part, "The health and safety of all of our participants is first and foremost on our minds." 

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church in Carmel will host the rally following the downtown parade past the Indiana Statehouse, which is scheduled for noon on Friday. 

Participants must register in advance.

MCPHD testing, vaccine sites closed for MLK Jr. Day

The Marion County Public Health Department will be closed Monday, Jan. 18 for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. That includes the COVID-19 vaccine clinic and drive-thru COVID-19 testing sites.

The sites will return to regular business hours Tuesday, Jan. 19.

Latest US, world numbers

There have been more than 23.93 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States as of 1:30 a.m. ET Monday, according to Johns Hopkins University. There have been more than 397,000 deaths in the U.S. 

Worldwide, there have been more than 95.04 million confirmed cases with more than 2.03 million deaths and 52.31 million recoveries.

RELATED: See where confirmed Indiana coronavirus cases are with this interactive map

RELATED: VERIFY: Are Indiana’s new COVID-19 case numbers inflated with multiple positive tests for the same person?

The real number of people infected by the virus around the world is believed to be much higher — perhaps 10 times higher in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — given testing limitations and the many mild cases that have gone unreported or unrecognized.

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.

CDC concerned UK coronavirus variant may be dominant in US by March

Health officials say by March, a new and more infectious variant of coronavirus — first found in the United Kingdom — will likely become the dominant variant in the United States.

The UK variant currently is in 12 states but has been diagnosed in only 76 of the 23 million US cases reported to date.

However, it’s likely that version of the virus is more widespread in the US than is currently reported, according to scientists at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

While it’s considered more infectious than the virus that’s been causing the bulk of U.S. cases so far, there’s no evidence that it causes more severe illness or is transmitted differently. 

Therefore, mask wearing, social distancing and hand washing and other prevention strategies can still work, the CDC says.