Like many other parts of Virginia and the U.S., Fairfax County is seeing an increase in COVID-19 cases as the weather gets cooler.
The county has a rolling seven-day average of 133.9 cases as of Nov. 2, the highest since mid-June when an average of 137 cases was recorded on June 12.
After adding 937 cases over the past seven days starting on Oct. 27, including 167 new cases just on Nov. 2, Fairfax County now has a total of 24,642 COVID-19 cases and 2,317 hospitalizations.
The latest data from the Virginia Department of Health shows that the Fairfax Health District, which includes the cities of Fairfax and Falls Church as well as Fairfax County, now has a total of 620 COVID-19 deaths, with 605 deaths in Fairfax County, eight in Fairfax City, and seven in Falls Church.
Fairfax County’s case rate of 2,120 cases per 100,000 people is roughly in line with those of surrounding localities, surpassing Arlington (2,012) but remaining under the City of Alexandria (2,718) despite its significantly larger population.
Virginia’s northern region as a whole saw a steady upward trend in cases throughout October, but it has become more pronounced over the past week, when the region’s seven-day moving average rose from 234.3 cases on Oct. 25 to 322.3 cases today.
While that still falls far short of the 685.3 seven-day average recorded when the pandemic was peaking in Northern Virginia at the end of May, the upward trajectory reflects an overall surge in reported COVID-19 cases throughout Virginia.
The 1,306 seven-day moving average that Virginia reported today is the highest that the state has ever seen since the novel coronavirus first emerged in the Commonwealth in March.
The regional and statewide climb in COVID-19 cases will continue to draw scrutiny as Fairfax County Public Schools plans to bring more students back into physical classrooms throughout November.
FCPS started returning small cohorts of students to in-person instruction at the beginning of October, and students in early Head Start through second grade, along with students in special education and students with intensive support needs, are all tentatively scheduled to return to school by Nov. 30.
117 employees and 26 students have reported contracting COVID-19 to principals, program managers, or administrators since early September, according to a weekly COVID-19 case dashboard compiled by FCPS.
Because the case count is based on self-reporting, FCPS notes that the data “should be interpreted with caution…and may not be aligned to future epidemiological investigations.”
Staff Photo by Jay Westcott; image via Virginia Department of Health