COVID map 5-4

The Tennessee Department of Health has confirmed 13,502 cases of COVID-19 across the state, up 325 cases from the number on Sunday afternoon.

More than 6,800 tests were processed and reported since Sunday, bringing the statewide total to 211,443 people tested. Across the state, 1,143 individuals have been hospitalized and 219 people have died. Those numbers are up eight and nine, respectively, since late Sunday. 

Over the weekend, the state reported 1,286 new cases of COVID-19, a record in daily increases partly attributed to isolated outbreaks and identified clusters. On Friday, the state announced a more than 1,200-case outbreak at Trousdale Turner Correctional Center — the fourth-largest cluster identified so far in the country, according to an analysis by the New York Times. The statewide hospitalization and death rate increased 22 and six over the weekend, respectively. 

The National Guard and Department of Health tested more than 5,000 more people this weekend through the state’s expanded testing initiative, bringing the overall total to more than 23,000 Tennessee residents tested across 67 drive-through sites over the past three weekends. 

“Testing remains one of the most important tools for gaining more information in our fight against COVID-19, and the 23,000 tests we’ve completed over the last three weekends have provided incredibly valuable data,” Gov. Bill Lee said. “We’re grateful to the thousands who came out to receive a test this weekend and we continue to remind Tennesseans: when in doubt, get a test.”

Lee this week will stop hosting daily press briefings related to COVID-19 and instead is set to provide updates only on Tuesday and Thursday. The reduction of public availability comes at a time Lee’s administration is working through an aggressive strategy to relaunch the economy without causing an increase in the virus’ spread. 

State banks process 40,000+ loans in PPP’s second round

Tennessee banks last week processed 40,971 loan applications under the second phase of the federal government’s Paycheck Protection Program. Lenders across the state received approvals totaling a little more than $2.4 billion.

At an average of $58,778 per loan, those totals reflect a much sharper focus by the U.S. Small Business Administration and the U.S. Treasury on funneling aid to small companies after a number of large enterprises — several hundred of them publicly traded — were approved for loans in the PPP’s first round. During that first lending push last month, which made available more than $340 billion to companies nationwide, Tennessee lenders handled 34,035 loans for a total of $6.54 billion — an average of $192,215 per loan.

Nationally, 5,432 banks last week approved more than 2.2 million loans for a total of nearly $176 billion, making the average loan worth nearly $80,000. About $135 billion is still available under the PPP.

This post originally appeared in our sister publication, the Nashville Post

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