March 18 COVID-19 update: Tennessee reports 661 new cases, 23 additional deaths

Metro reports 283 new cases, 2 additional deaths
Posted at 9:21 AM, Mar 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-18 15:44:03-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — The Tennessee Department of Health reported 661 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, bringing the total number of known cases in the state to 796,624.

Of the total cases, 772,665 are now considered recovered while 12,278 remain active. The decline in active cases has slowed in recent weeks, only dropping by about 9% since March 1. Thursday's rate of positive new tests is 6.80%

Twenty-three additional Tennesseans have died from COVID-19. TDH has attributed 11,681 deaths to the coronavirus so far.

Hospitals statewide reported 66`1 current COVID-19 patients overnight.

Metro Public Health officials reported 283 new cases of COVID-19 and two additional deaths were also reported.

This brings Metro's total number of cases to 92,545, 89,875 of which are now considered to be inactive/recovered. Right now, there are 1,821 active cases.

Health officials said there have been two new confirmed deaths reported in the past 24 hours -- a 63-year-old man and an 80-year-old man, both with underlying health conditions.

As of Thursday, 764 Davidson County residents have died from a confirmed case of COVID-19. Including probable cases, 849 deaths have been attributed to COVID-19.

Metro Public Health also provided its weekly COVID-19 update today. This week's briefing comes two days before Metro's first mass vaccination event at Nissan Stadium. Metro said at this time, they're not planning another major vaccination event like this weekend's; however, they will probably have smaller, more community focused events in the future.

Nashville could also soon see loosened COVID restrictions, but that's contingent upon the city hitting its goal of 20% and 30% of residents vaccinated. Metro Public Health said we are at 19% with one vaccine and 10% that are fully vaccinated as of March 16. If we hit the 20% mark this week, we could expect a new public health order around the weekend of the 27th.

So far, 20% of residents have received at least one dose of the vaccine. As of today, more than 73,000 have been fully vaccinated -- that's 10% of the county. Metro will open more appointments for the Music City Center on Friday. Click here for more information.

Dr. Gill Wright also recommended getting a COVID test if you travel for spring break, saying, "it would not be a surprise if cases increase over the next few weeks as a result of exposure during spring break."

Metro also released the following data:

New cases per 100,000 people: 18.9
Seven-day percent positive of COVID-19 tests: 3.7

Available Middle Tennessee hospital beds: 14 percent
Available Middle Tennessee ICU beds: 20 percent

The MPHD COVID-19 Hotline received 589 calls on Wednesday, March 17, 2021.

Total number of cases: 92,545
Cases reported in the past 24 hours: 283

Cases by sex
Male: 43,948
Female: 47,832
Unknown: 765

Cases by age

Total active cases1,821


See all our coronavirus coverage here


What is COVID-19 (a.k.a. the new coronavirus?)

According to the World Health Organization, coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases. Examples include the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans. COVID-19 stands for "Coronavirus disease 2019," which is when this strain of the coronavirus was discovered.

What are the symptoms?

The CDC says patients confirmed to have the 2019-nCoV reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness with:

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

Or at least two of the following symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Repeated shaking with chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell

At this time, the CDC believes symptoms could appear as soon as two days after exposure, or as long as 14 days.


The CDC is recommending "common sense" measures such as:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.