Centra officials projecting earlier COVID-19 peak than originally anticipated

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LYNCHBURG, Va. (WDBJ7) -- Centra Health officials are now anticipating an earlier peak of coronavirus cases than first thought.

A team of doctors hosted a virtual update on cases Tuesday.

They say based on a model used by the White House Coronavirus Task Force, we may see a peak around April 20, several weeks earlier than originally anticipated.

However, leaders caution to remain vigilant. as medical experts are projecting around 1,400 COVID-19-related deaths in the state.

That's only three hundred fewer deaths than what's projected in the state of California.

"Some of it may be the phenomenon of large, metropolitan concentrated areas in the state that we have, in the Tidewater, Northern Virginia [area]," explained Andy Mueller, Centra's president and CEO. "The President's Task Force specifically called out their interest in Washington D.C. as a potential hot spot and certainly that probably has a bleed-over effect into our region."

Officials also gave an update on cases being treated by the Centra hospital system.

As of Tuesday afternoon, 769 people had been tested by Centra. 52 people tested positive, 13 people are hospitalized and nine people are in the ICU.

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