Indiana coronavirus: IN Gov. Holcomb tests negative for COVID-19 after health commissioner tests positive

Indiana reports 1,962 COVID-19 cases, 23 deaths Thursday

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Thursday, October 15, 2020
Indiana coronavirus: IN Gov. Holcomb tests negative for COVID-19 after health commissioner tests positive
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Indiana reported 1,962 new COVID-19 cases and 23 deaths Thursday, and officials said Gov. Eric Holcomb tested negative for the virus.

INDIANAPOLIS (WLS) -- Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb tested negative for COVID-19 Thursday after the state's health commissioner tested positive Wednesday, state officials said.

Dr. Kristina Box, who frequently spoke at Indiana's COVID-19 press conferences, tested positive along with her daughter and grandson. She is not suffering any symptoms, but her daughter has mild symptoms, officials said.

"Janet and I are wishing Dr. Box and her family a speedy recovery," Holcomb said. "The coronavirus does not discriminate, and this further highlights the importance of wearing masks and social distancing."

Box and Dr. Lindsay Weaver, chief medical officer for the Indiana State Department of Health, have advised Holcomb that he can resume his normal schedule with vigilance about masking and social distancing.

According to Box and Weaver, the governor and staff members did not meet the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's definition of close contact as they were socially distanced and wore masks during their interactions with Box, but were tested "out of an abundance of caution."

Indiana reported 1,962 new COVID-19 cases and 23 deaths Thursday.

The state's seven-day rolling average of new cases of the respiratory disease has doubled in the past three weeks. The Health Department's daily update showed Indiana's seven-day rolling average of newly confirmed COVID-19 infections reached 1,653 as of Wednesday.

The Indiana State Department of Health confirmed a total of 141,212 positive coronavirus cases in the state, including 3,632 deaths. That's an increase of 122 deaths in the past week.

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In the last 24 hours, officials have conducted 25,338 tests, with a seven-day positivity rate of 5.4%.

Indiana's statewide mask order will remain in place but tougher restrictions on businesses and crowd sizes aren't being reinstated despite recent sharp increases in COVID-19 hospitalizations and rates of new infections.

Holcomb said Wednesday he was extending the current order for a month. He said some people were showing disregard for the safety of others.

The University of Notre Dame's president has ended his quarantine after testing positive for the coronavirus less than a week following his attendance at a White House event without wearing a mask.

The Rev. John Jenkins "is symptom-free and looks forward to resuming his normal activities," the university announced Monday.

He began his self-isolation period on Sept. 28, two days after he attended the Rose Garden nomination ceremony of Notre Dame law professor Judge Amy Coney Barrett for Supreme Court justice.

Jenkins said he was tested after finding out a colleague with whom he has been in regular contact tested positive for COVID-19.

The university announced the university president's COVID-19 diagnosis on Oct. 2.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.