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The latest news on COVID in Oklahoma

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KOSU is covering the coronavirus in Oklahoma and how it's affecting our lives. Bookmark this page for the latest updates.

The journalists at KOSU are proud to bring you trustworthy and relevant reporting about the coronavirus. If you find this work valuable, please consider supporting us with a financial gift. Here's how.

The latest coronavirus updates:

More than 13,900 new COVID infections reported in Oklahoma

Updated January 21 at 11:12 a.m.

13,939 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in Oklahoma on Friday, for a total of 880,342 since March 2020.

The state's seven-day average in new coronavirus cases has increased to 11,908 per day.

41 additional deaths were also reported, as the state's Provisional Death Count, which reflects COVID-19 deaths based on death certificates, stands at 12,968.

Just 54.6 percent of Oklahoma's population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, placing Oklahoma in the bottom 13 states for vaccine rollout.

Oklahoma City Public Schools bumps substitute pay amid state's school staffing shortage

Updated January 20 at 3:50 p.m.

Oklahoma City Public Schools announced the district is increasing its substitute pay by $70 a day compared to before the pandemic.

Anyone with a bachelor’s degree can now make up to $135 a day to be a sub at an OKCPS site.

If a guest educator subs five days in a row, there is also a $100 bonus.

The daily pay structure looks like this:

  • Certified teacher $80 + COVID Stipend of $70 = $150
  • Bachelor’s Degree $65 + COVID Stipend of $70 = $135
  • High School Diploma $55 + COVID Stipend of $70 = $125

“OKCPS has remained focused on our health and safety practices from the onset of the pandemic, and we know that a layered approach to mitigation is our best way to keep our schools open and keep our students learning together in-person,” the district said in a statement.

The move comes after a spate of closures and distance learning due to the coronavirus across the district and Oklahoma. Thousands of children have missed school and more than 300 districts have had to pivot or close amid staffing shortages and student absences because of the raging Omicron variant.

Earlier this week, Gov. Kevin Stitt called on state employees to volunteer to be subs across Oklahoma. Several media outlets report roughly 100 of the state’s 32,000 employees have expressed interest in subbing to the governor’s office.

To sign up to be a guest teacher in OKC visit the district's website.

More than 13,400 new COVID infections reported in Oklahoma

Updated January 20 at 11:15 a.m.

13,406 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in Oklahoma on Thursday, for a total of 866,403 since March 2020.

The state's seven-day average in new coronavirus cases has increased to 11,533 per day.

Oklahoma's Provisional Death Count was not updated and remains at 12,927.

Just 54.6 percent of Oklahoma's population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, placing Oklahoma in the bottom 13 states for vaccine rollout.

More than 10,000 new coronavirus infections reported in Oklahoma

Updated January 19 at 11:25 a.m.

10,001 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in Oklahoma on Wednesday, for a total of 852,997 since March 2020.

The state's seven-day average in new coronavirus cases has jumped to 11,118 per day.

39 additional deaths were also reported, as the state's Provisional Death Count, which reflects COVID-19 deaths based on death certificates, stands at 12,927.

Just 54.2 percent of Oklahoma's population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, placing Oklahoma in the bottom 13 states for vaccine rollout.

Omicron surge affecting Indian Health Service too, but Oklahoma official says they're prepared

Updated January 19 at 10:07 a.m.

Admiral Greggory Woitte, the chief medical officer for the Oklahoma City Area Indian Health Service, says the agency performed more than 27,000 COVID tests during the first nine days of January.

It was the largest number of tests they had performed in a similar period during the pandemic, and 26 percent came back positive. That trend has continued, but Woitte said the Oklahoma City Clinic had been preparing for months.

They anticipated another surge in COVID cases and began ordering at-home test kits for patients during the fall months of 2020.

"It's valuable for us, for the patients to test at home so that if they turn positive, they can quarantine and avoid coming into our health care systems, which are already overburdened," said Woitte.

The Indian Health Service has also seen an increase in hospitalizations due to the recent surge caused by the omicron variant.

Woitte said in many cases, patients are coming in for other health issues without symptoms of COVID-19, but positive tests are revealing asymptomatic cases among these patients. "The hospitalizations are staying about the same, we have seen an increase in the patients that are in the hospital as being COVID positive, but we aren't seeing as many as we've seen in previous surges," said Woitte.

Sometimes tribal health systems don’t have access to all of the materials they might need for surges. They have limited access to the Strategic National Stockpile of medical equipment and supplies, and the access they do have is not guaranteed.

To ensure equal access to the Strategic National Stockpile for tribal health systems, Rep. Tom Cole, Co-Chair of the Congressional Native American Caucus (Chickasaw, R-OK) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) introduced a bipartisan bill in 2020. Six senators and representatives have signed on as co-sponsors of the bill, including Rep. Sharice Davids (Ho-Chunk, D-KS), Co-Chair of the Congressional Native American Caucus.

“When the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services taps into our Strategic National Stockpile and distributes out to prevent shortages in communities across the nation, it is simply common sense to include Native communities,” said Cole.

Woitte said Indian Health Service in Oklahoma did access the Strategic National Stockpile for ventilators, and they currently have enough supply for people hospitalized with COVID-19 in the state.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Indigenous people are 3.5 times more likely to contract COVID-19 than non-Indigenous people, and the outcomes are worse. Native Americans are more than four times more likely to be hospitalized for the disease and nearly twice as likely to die from complications.

On Jan. 18, 36 people were hospitalized in Oklahoma tribal healthcare facilities. Eight of those people were in Intensive Care Units (ICU). The seven-day average for positive COVID cases was 10,476 in the state, the highest it has been since the pandemic began. Nearly 13,000 people have died from the disease in the state.

Amid rampant COVID surge, Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt turns to state employees to shore up substitute teaching slots

Updated January 18 at 8:51 p.m.

Gov. Kevin Stitt held one of his first COVID-19 briefings in several months on Tuesday, as health and education leaders expressed fears that the severe omicron surge was getting worse. His address, which introduced a controversial policy to combat the state’s acute substitute teacher shortage, contradicted much of what the experts had said hours before he took to the podium.

In the press conference, Stitt was resolute about keeping students in schools as the coronavirus surges across the state.

“Oklahoma students deserve that option of being in person, in class with their teachers,” he said.

An executive order from Stitt is paving the way for Oklahoma’s more than 30,000 state employees to work as substitute teachers as omicron ravages schools.

With more than half of Oklahoma’s schools having to close or pivot to distance learning due to staffing shortages created by the coronavirus so far this semester, Stitt said his executive order will allow state employees to step in.

“I’m asking all state employees to see what they can do, because in person learning is so, so important for the future of that specific child, but also for the state of Oklahoma,” he said.

State officials said state employees will still be paid as part of their day jobs, while subbing in local districts, saving money because districts won’t have to pay substitute teachers.

Substitute pay can vary, but the most qualified make $120 a day at Oklahoma City Public Schools.

It will be up to employees to sign up to be substitutes, and they will have to pass a background check and complete district-specific training to be allowed into classrooms. It’s unclear how long that process could take, but Stitt administration officials said they hope state employees will start reaching out to school districts as soon as possible.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister issued a release agreeing that schools should stay open, but she criticized the plan.

“This gesture is a cup of water on a raging fire,” the statement reads in part. “The immediate problem is that we are in the middle of a tremendous surge, impacting more than schools. Oklahomans are seeing the ramifications of COVID in their workplaces, churches and families.

The statement continues, "With the stroke of a pen, the governor could untie the hands of schools to mitigate spread and allow hospitals to increase capacity. The governor could immediately deploy the national guard to assist with school transportation and food services using millions of COVID relief dollars already in hand.”

That tremendous surge is what led hospital leaders from Oklahoma City’s largest health systems to hold a briefing Tuesday morning, describing crisis-level strain.

As in earlier stages of the pandemic, the four health systems — INTEGRIS, Mercy, OU Health and SSM Saint Anthony — began issuing their own bed and ICU capacity data. For several days, none of the systems have had one ICU bed open.

Executives from the systems took to the airwaves to explain how dire the state’s hospitalization situation is. Again, they spoke of short staffing in both medical and nonmedical positions, full ICUs, full ERs, patients being transferred out of state, and patients — who couldn’t get a transfer secured — dying. The overall number of hospitalizations — now over 1,400 — is creeping toward last year’s record, and hospitals have even more staff shortages than they did then.

“Make no mistake, while you may feel that omicron variants are mild and dismissible, now is the time to realize that you couldn’t be further from the truth,” said Dr. Kersey Winfree, of SSM Saint Anthony. “We are here today to sounding the alarm. It is spreading rapidly, making many people with chronic illnesses sicker and disrupting our communities — as well as our health care workforce, with infections among our employees and their families.”

Other medical professionals, who are members of the Healthier Oklahoma Coalition, held their regular briefing to discuss ongoing case and hospitalization growth. Health experts warned that hospitals are getting hit harder now than ever, and that they doubt it will let up soon.

Oklahoma Hospital Association President Patti Davis noted that hospitalization trends lag behind case trends, and the seven-day average in infections — more than 10,000 per day as of Tuesday — hasn’t begun to dip significantly.

“It’s very important for the public to understand we have not hit our peak yet,” she said.

Health professionals in each briefing discussed policies that could help mitigate spread, including mask requirements and encouraging work-from-home practices when available. One of the most helpful tools, Winfree said during the hospital executive briefing, would be getting health experts and state officials on the same page.

“People are very anxious,” he said. “A lot of the anxiety about potential danger to themselves, their loved ones, coworkers can be, I think, addressed and reassured whenever we’re aligned in our messaging. The actual messages that we currently are trying to share could be made louder with the right amount of alignment from state leadership.”

During his address, Stitt emphasized that hospitalization numbers are not as high now as they were in the January 2021 spike. He noted that surrounding states have seen their cases go down.

“The good news, that they just shared with me from the Department of Health, was there are four or five states around us that are starting to see their numbers come back down,” he said, offering examples in Maine, Florida and Louisiana. “So we think we’re about peaked and coming back down on the other side of it.”

IMMY Labs keeping up as COVID surges

Updated January 18 at 1:29 p.m.

As the omicron wave of the coronavirus continues to surge, the need for testing has skyrocketed.

One Oklahoma testing lab has been able to keep up with the significant workload. IMMY Labs in Norman says although testing has increased significantly, they’ve been able to keep up with the demand.

Keegan Nees with IMMY Labs says the turnaround time for results over the last few weeks has averaged less than 24 hours despite a record number of tests being processed. Just two months ago the company was processing about 200 samples a day. Now, it’s in the thousands.

While many businesses are struggling with worker shortages, the lab says it's been able to boost staffing to handle the increased workload, opting for an early morning and late evening shift split so more samples can be processed.

113 new COVID deaths reported in Oklahoma

Updated January 18 at 11:16 a.m.

On Tuesday, 113 additional deaths were confirmed in Oklahoma since Friday, as the state's Provisional Death Count, which reflects COVID-19 deaths based on death certificates, stands at 12,888.

3,853 new coronavirus infections were also reported, for a total of 842,996 since March 2020. Reporting is generally low over holiday weekends, so that average may not be an accurate assesment of the current situation.

The state's seven-day average in new coronavirus cases dropped slightly to 10,476 per day.

Just 54.2 percent of Oklahoma's population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, placing Oklahoma in the bottom 13 states for vaccine rollout.

More than 12,800 new COVID infections reported in Oklahoma

Updated January 17 at 2:10 p.m.

12,841 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in Oklahoma on Monday, for a total of 839,143 since March 2020.

More than 10,000 cases have been reported in each of the last five days:

  • Monday: 12,841
  • Sunday: 14,913
  • Saturday: 14,403
  • Friday: 11,315
  • Thursday: 10.502

As of Monday, the state's seven-day average in new coronavirus cases has jumped to 10,642 per day.

Oklahoma's Provisional Death Count has not been updated since Friday, and remains at 12,775.

Just 54.2 percent of Oklahoma's population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, placing Oklahoma in the bottom 13 states for vaccine rollout.

Why vaccines still offer some help after six months and other COVID questions answered

Updated January 17 at 1:31 p.m.

The following quotes are from medical professionals in interviews given last week. If you have COVID or other health questions, email catherine@stateimpactoklahoma.org.

We know that antibodies from the COVID-19 vaccines in your system wane after six months, which is why we’re told to get boosters. Six months after your two shots, are you essentially unvaccinated? Is your extra immunity gone?

Dr. Aaron Wendelboe, former state epidemiologist and current professor at the OU College of Public Health, said that immunity is much higher after a booster, but it is still higher with the two vaccines than it would be with no vaccines at all.

He said one reason people get confused and think that immunity is totally gone after six months is because of the term “circulating antibodies.” We hear that those are gone after six months.

"Nobody ever has circulating antibodies for really any pathogen for this long period of time," said Wendelboe. "So you have memory cells, and those memory cells, when they get re-exposed to a pathogen, they will make those antibodies and, they will make those killer T cells, and they will mount the response. They can react within, let’s say, five days."

Wendelboe continued, "The problem with COVID is that — both Delta, and even more so Omicron — they’re replicating so fast. That’s the primary reason why people are getting infected: they can infect you before your memory cells have a chance to kick in. But they’re still blunting some of that risk of getting hospitalized or severe illness."

So in summary, Wendelboe says that if you’re vaccinated but not boosted, you don’t have those circulating antibodies anymore. But the vaccine has taught your immune system how to fight back. It just takes a little bit longer.

He compared response times in non-boosted but still vaccinated people and completely unvaccinated people. The first body might take five days or so to fully mount an attack. The second body is likely to take closer to 14 days. Those nine days make a huge difference, he said, because viral growth is exponential.

Think about it like this: There are two sides in a battle. Your side and the enemy’s side. Your side’s army has the same number of people until backup comes. The other side’s army is constantly multiplying. The longer backup takes to get there, the larger the enemy’s army will be.

Is the omicron variant really less likely to cause infections so severe people land in the hospital? If so, are fewer people going to end up being in the hospital?

Wendelboe: Yes, there are a lower proportion of people being hospitalized, but because the sheer number [of cases] is so high, that still just results in a high number of people being hospitalized.

Note: Oklahoma has broken case count records this week, and on Thursday, the state reported more than 10,000 cases in one day for the first time. This excludes rapid and at-home tests, which aren’t reported to the state.

I’ve heard people who are vaccinated are getting infected more often than people who aren’t vaccinated. Is that true?

"That is not true. We know that to be incorrect," said Dr. Mary Clarke, president of the Oklahoma State Medical Association.

Clarke said a few things could make that appear true, especially among social groups where many people don’t believe in vaccines. People who do get vaccinated are more likely to get tested, and they’re more likely to let people know they’ve been infected.

Oklahoma has record-breaking COVID case count for third straight day with 14,403 infections

Updated January 15 at 4:37 p.m.

14,403 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in Oklahoma on Saturday, for a total of 811,389 since March 2020.

The Oklahoma State Department of Health, which normally doesn't release a COVID-19 update on the weekend, notes that number includes more than 1,300 cases from late lab reports from November and December 2021.

Even without those 1,300 cases, Saturday's report broke the record for highest single-day case count in Oklahoma since the pandemic began. It was the third such day in a row to do that.

The state's seven-day average in new coronavirus cases has jumped to 9,211 per day.

Oklahoma's Provisional Death Count was not updated and remains at 12,775.

Just 54.1 percent of Oklahoma's population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, placing Oklahoma in the bottom 13 states for vaccine rollout.

Indian Health Service also seeing COVID surge

Updated January 14 at 4:46 p.m.

Indian Health Service facilities in Oklahoma are also seeing a spike in COVID-19 patients, but officials in the system say they're prepared.

Oklahoma City Area Indian Health Service performed more than 27,000 COVID tests during the first 10 days of January. Officials say it's the largest number of tests they've performed during the pandemic, and 26 percent came back positive.

Chief Medical Officer Dr. Greggory Woitte said IHS anticipated another surge and ordered at-home test kits last fall. 

"It's valuable for us, for the patients to test at home so that if they turn positive, they can quarantine and avoid coming into our health care systems, which are already overburdened," said Woitte.

Indian Health Service has also seen an increase in hospitalizations during the omicron variant surge, but Woitte said many patients are coming in for other issues, test positive for the virus and then have to be quarantined for COVID.

Earlier this month, a bipartisan bill that would Guarantee Tribal Health Authorities Access to the Strategic National Stockpile was introduced by Congressman Tom Cole and Senator Elizabeth Warren. This would help IHS facilities get more personal protective equipment and ventilators if they need them.

Oklahoma breaks another record for coronavirus infections reported in a single-day with more than 11,000

Updated January 14 at 11:35 a.m.

11,315 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in Oklahoma on Friday, for a total of 796,986 since March 2020.

That's the highest single-day case count in Oklahoma since the pandemic began, breaking its previous record, which was set on Thursday.

The state's seven-day average in new coronavirus cases has jumped to 8,485 per day.

25 additional deaths were also reported, as the state's Provisional Death Count, which reflects COVID-19 deaths based on death certificates, stands at 12,775.

Hospitalizations in the state also continue to increase, with the three-day average at 1,403 patients, an increase of 42 patients from Thursday's report.

More than 230 Oklahoma school districts pivoted at least one site to distance learning because of the coronavirus this past week — a rate of closures so far unseen during the pandemic. That adds up to about 40% of Oklahoma public school districts pivoting to distance learning or closing because of the virus this week alone.

Just 54.1 percent of Oklahoma's population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, placing Oklahoma in the bottom 13 states for vaccine rollout.

Osage Nation ramps up COVID testing

Updated January 13 at 11:41 a.m.

In an effort to control an outbreak of the Omicron variant of the coronavirus, Osage Nation is ramping up testing. The tribal nation tested all of its 405 employees at the Wahzhazhe Health Center, and 14 percent of the tests came back positive.

Daposka Ahnkodapi, the Osage Nation’s language immersion school, has shifted to distance learning, other language classes have been canceled, and the Osage Nation welcome center is closed until further notice.

Osage Nation says they have plenty of testing supplies and vaccines and they're stepping up efforts to make sure those supplies are used in a way that can keep tribal citizens safe. 

More than 10,500 new coronavirus infections reported in Oklahoma

Updated January 13 at 11:29 a.m.

10,502 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in Oklahoma on Thursday, for a total of 785,671 since March 2020.

The state's seven-day average in new coronavirus cases has jumped to 7,788 per day.

53 additional deaths were also reported, as the state's Provisional Death Count, which reflects COVID-19 deaths based on death certificates, stands at 12,750.

Just 54.1 percent of Oklahoma's population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, placing Oklahoma in the bottom 13 states for vaccine rollout.

The omicron variant is hitting Oklahoma hard and creating troubles unseen in earlier surges

Updated January 13 at 4:00 a.m.

After months of what felt like a return to normal, the coronavirus is back with a vengeance. This surge poses different threats than those of the past.

175 Oklahoma school districts have pivoted to distance learning as coronavirus levels surge

Updated January 12 at 7:12 p.m.

Nearly one-third of all Oklahoma school districts have pivoted at least one site to distance learning because of the coronavirus this week — a rate of closures so far unseen during the pandemic.

Thousands of students are out of the classroom and back on the couch because of COVID-19.

Many have contracted or been exposed to it. More teachers are calling out sick than at any point during the pandemic.

It all adds up to about 20% of Oklahoma public school districts pivoting to distance learning or just plain closing because of the virus. The figure comes from StateImpact’s project tracking school closures in Oklahoma.

There is a silver lining, though. The closures are scheduled to be shorter than they have been in the past, thanks to shorter quarantine and isolation times for people exposed and infected with the virus. Many students are expected to return to school next week.

More than 5,500 new coronavirus infections reported in Oklahoma

Updated January 12 at 11:32 a.m.

5,507 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in Oklahoma on Wednesday, for a total of 775,169 since March 2020.

The state's seven-day average in new coronavirus cases has jumped to 7,185 per day.

31 additional deaths were also reported, as the state's Provisional Death Count, which reflects COVID-19 deaths based on death certificates, stands at 12,697.

Just 54 percent of Oklahoma's population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, placing Oklahoma in the bottom 13 states for vaccine rollout.

Pediatric hospitalizations rising in Oklahoma

Updated January 12 at 4:56 a.m.

Oklahoma is seeing a rise in the number of pediatric COVID-19 patients. According to KOCO, the Oklahoma Children’s Hospital says they are treating up to three times more children than they did during last winter’s surge.

The state Health Department says there are 32 pediatric hospitalizations statewide, with 25 of those patients being treated at the Oklahoma Children's Hospital. Officials say the Children's Hospital has been forced to sideline some medical procedures because of a staffing strain.

More than 5,000 new coronavirus infections reported in Oklahoma

Updated January 11 at 11:14 a.m.

5,011 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in Oklahoma on Tuesday, for a total of 769,662 since March 2020.

The state's seven-day average in new coronavirus cases has jumped to 6,957 per day.

16 additional deaths were also reported, as the state's Provisional Death Count, which reflects COVID-19 deaths based on death certificates, stands at 12,666.

Just 54 percent of Oklahoma's population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, placing Oklahoma in the bottom 13 states for vaccine rollout.

Advice on COVID testing

Updated January 11 at 6:13 a.m.

Health officials are asking you to avoid going to the emergency room for just a COVID-19 test. Recently, Oklahoma City hospitals have seen their emergency rooms packed with people seeking testing. Health leaders are asking people to use other options around the metro for testing and reserve visits to the E-R for emergencies. Since the holidays, COVID-19 cases and the demand for testing have skyrocketed. For a list of testing locations around the metro visit TestOKC.com.

The Tower Theatre in Oklahoma City is offering COVID-19 testing. Starting Tuesday, the theatre will have both rapid and PCR COVID testing available. According to a tweet, the theatre says tests will be available on a walk-in basis from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Testing will only be available on Tuesdays.

Dozens of Oklahoma schools pivot to distance learning as thousands of students, teachers catch the coronavirus

Updated January 10 at 4:42 p.m.

Across Oklahoma, dozens of schools have suspended in-person learning because of the coronavirus.

Updated CDC guidance means many students and teachers are able to come back to classrooms more quickly after catching COVID-19.

But still, with classes resuming last week, the coronavirus has spread in many schools.

Oklahoma City Public Schools has been hit particularly hard. The district has roughly 3,000 students out of school because they tested positive for COVID-19 or were exposed.

Additionally, more than 300 staff members are out, meaning there aren’t enough teachers.

At least four sites have pivoted to distance learning, and Superintendent Sean McDaniel says more will likely join those schools in the coming days, too.

“While we want all our kids in the schoolhouse all the time, we know that there are circumstances that arise that prevent that from happening,” McDaniel said.

OKCPS is hardly alone in its fight with the coronavirus. Districts in every corner of the state have had to move classes online because of COVID-19.

Oklahoma's two largest universities to require masks in class

Updated January 10 at 11:32 a.m.

Oklahoma’s colleges and universities are bracing for students to come back this semester.

And as the omicron variant surges, The University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University expect students returning for classes will bring the coronavirus with them.

That’s why the two universities have announced mandatory masking in classes on their Stillwater and Norman campuses for the first two weeks students are back.

“Since the onset of the pandemic, we have sought to implement protocols that will protect our community, while also allowing for our in-person experience to continue,” Dale Bratzler, OU’s chief COVID officer wrote in an email to the campus community. “Certainly, there is no perfect balancing of those priorities; it is thanks to the vigilance of our community that we have been able to maintain our life-changing in-person experience in the face of the pandemic.”

Classes will begin at OU on Jan. 17, and the mask mandate will remain in effect until the end of the month.

Classes at OSU began Monday.

For classes to be in-person, instructors must have a mask mandate for the first two weeks there. If the instructor did not wish to have a masking requirement, the class could be moved online.

OSU wrote in its letter to the campus community that the masking requirement would remain in place for two weeks in classrooms. After that, it was up to individual instructors on if masks would be required.

“Thank you for your understanding and patience as we continue to navigate the pandemic,” Johnny Stephens, Senior Vice President for Health Affairs, wrote in a letter to the OSU community. “Please know we are making the best decisions we can while weighing the information we have available.”

OU and OSU had implemented a vaccine requirement for staff. But that mandate was suspended after a federal judge suspended COVID-19 vaccine requirements for federal contractors.

More than 27,000 new coronavirus infections reported in Oklahoma since Friday

Updated January 10 at 11:24 a.m.

More than 27,000 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in Oklahoma over the weekend, for a total of 764,651 since March 2020.

The state's seven-day average in new coronavirus cases has jumped from 4,094 per day on Friday to 6,829 per day on Monday.

58 additional deaths were also reported, as the state's Provisional Death Count, which reflects COVID-19 deaths based on death certificates, stands at 12,650.

Just 54 percent of Oklahoma's population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, placing Oklahoma in the bottom 13 states for vaccine rollout.

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