Indiana officials report 511 new COVID-19 cases, 11 deaths

Updated 5/17/2020 1:36 PM

INDIANAPOLIS -- Indiana public health officials reported 511 new COVID-19 cases and 11 confirmed deaths Sunday as some Marion County businesses saw a surge in customers during their first weekend since reopening.

There have been 1,607 confirmed COVID-19 deaths overall. An additional 144 deaths are considered to be coronavirus-related by doctors but without confirmation from test results. Overall, there have been 27,778 cases, according to the Indiana State Department of Health.


Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb's reopening plan allowed businesses in many parts of the state to open their doors earlier this month but with guidelines like reduced capacity. Marion County began reopening Friday with similar restrictions.

Erin Young Designs in Indianapolis said it was an uneasy start.

'I was shocked at how many people were coming, not actually abiding by the 6 feet guidelines,' owner Erin Young told WISH-TV. 'I was, by the end of the day, nervous.'

Meanwhile, employees at Civvies, an Indianapolis boutique, were pleased.

'Honestly, we're just pleasantly surprised people are coming back to us so quickly,' manager Virginia Meguschar told the station.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. But for others, especially older people and those with existing health conditions, it can cause severe symptoms and lead to death.

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Other businesses including zoos and museums will be able to reopen next month at reduced capacity.

In the meantime, South Bend's Potawatomi Zoo hosted a drive-thru event Saturday with zoo workers standing with animals along a perimeter route as cars slowed down to get a closer look, according to WSBT-TV.

'Knowing that we won't be able to open until the middle of June, we thought 'What can we do? How can we think outside of the box?'" said executive director Josh Sisk. 'We have such a great experience behind the zoo. You've seen zebras, ostriches, a lot of different animals.'

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