From WMOT News

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Mike Osborne)  --  Tennessee officials say 21 state prison inmates have died due to COVID-19 complications.

New numbers released Thursday show at least one death has occurred in eight of Tennessee’s 16 prisons.

The Lois M. DeBerry Special Needs Prison reports the single largest number of fatalities. Seven inmates have died in the Nashville facility, which specializes in housing medically fragile inmates.


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WMOT/AP)  --  State health officials reported Wednesday that 700 Tennesseans died of COVID-19 related complications during September.

That’s the highest number of virus related fatalities reported in a single month since the pandemic began.

However, the rate at which the number of deaths is increasing has slowed in recent months.

Fatalities nearly doubled between June and July. The increase in the death rate dropped to 52 percent between July in August.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WMOT/AP)  --  Tennessee will next week begin receiving its share of the new rapid COVID-19 tests being distributed by the federal government.

State Health Commissioner Dr. Lisa Piercey said Tuesday Tennessee will receive an initial shipment of 130,000 tests in the coming days. She said Tennessee will get roughly two million tests by the end of the year.

The tests, created by Abbott labs, will be used primarily in schools and nursing homes.

LEBANON, Tenn. (Mike Osborne)  --  A company that makes N-95 respirators announced this week that it will open a manufacturing plant in Lebanon.

N-95 respirators have been in short supply since early in the pandemic. The respirators provide better protection to the wearer than cloth face masks.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A federal judge has blocked a Tennessee law that required women undergoing drug-induced abortions be informed the procedure could be reversed.


The statute was about to go into effect Thursday after the GOP-dominant General Assembly advanced a sweeping anti-abortion measure earlier this year.