Georgia adds 3,394 new COVID-19 cases; total approaches 124,000

A health care worker checks in an elderly man with an appointment at a pilot large scale drive-through COVID-19 testing site at the Georgia International Horse Park on Thursday, April 16, 2020, in Conyers, Ga. Testing is by appointment only and open to anyone in the general public who believes they are ill with COVID-19. According to Chad Wasdin, communications director for the Gwinnett Rockdale Newton Health Departments, due to increased testing capacity 400 appointments are scheduled for anyone who thinks they may be ill with the virus. While the Health Department requires a scheduled appointment to test individuals, referral from a doctor is not necessary. There is no charge for the testing, and those tested do not need to provide health insurance information. "We look forward to piloting this large-scale test site," said Dr. Audrey Arona, district health director and CEO of Gwinnett, Newton and Rockdale County Health Departments. "This is a fantastic collaboration between Rockdale and Newton county governments, their EMAs, and the Health Department. Testing will provide individuals in the community an opportunity to learn if their illness is consistent with the COVID-19 virus, and it will help us improve our plans for providing large-scale testing. (Curtis Compton/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP) (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

An additional 3,394 cases of COVID-19 were reported Tuesday afternoon by the Georgia Department of Public Health -- 249 cases less than were reported a day prior.

Georgia has now recorded 3,054 deaths, according to numbers released Monday afternoon, an increase of 28 from Monday. A total of 209 additional hospitalizations were reported. The statewide total reached 123,963.

In the six counties that News4Jax covers in South Georgia -- Brantley, Camden, Charlton, Glynn, Pierce and Ware -- 94 new cases were reported Tuesday, down slightly from the 109 cases reported Monday.

Testing in Georgia has ramped up considerably. As of Tuesday, more than 1.13 million people had been tested in the state, which had a 10% positivity rate.

Hospitalizations in Georgia totaled 13,685 although the state admits that’s likely an underestimation since it only counted if it was at the time the case was reported to DPH. The number also does not represent the number of people currently hospitalized.

Confirmed cases and hospitalizations have been rising sharply in the state over the past few weeks. Republican Gov. Brian Kemp has been locked in a battle with local officials over whether they have the power to implement virus restrictions that go beyond his orders. Kemp says no, but local governments across the state are doing it anyway, with several cities including Atlanta implementing mask requirements and other restrictions.