In a press release received last week from Tioga County’s Public Health Department, they offered the following breakdown of COVID-19 cases in Tioga County from Aug. 13, 2021 to Aug. 27, 2021.
According to the release, there were 101 new COVID cases, with 51 of those being unvaccinated; 27 were vaccinated; 14 were children under 12; five of the cases were partially vaccinated; and four have an unknown vaccination status. Of the cases, there were three hospitalizations and two deaths. The Health Department additionally noted that both of the individuals that died were unvaccinated.
The department explained that vaccination status is self-reported by the positive case or the parent or guardian during the case investigation, and that several factors may impact ones protection against COVID-19 including which vaccine they got and how long it has been since they received it.
The department wrote, “While the COVID-19 vaccine is not full proof in preventing the spread of COVID-19, it does offer protection against severe illness, hospitalization, and death.”
On Friday, Aug. 27, New York State announced that “any person over the age of two (including all students, personnel, teachers, administrators, contractors, and visitors) must wear masks at all times indoors in school buildings, regardless of vaccination status.”
They are hopeful that the combination of wearing masks and social distancing during the school day will greatly reduce the number of students, teachers, and staff needing to quarantine when a positive case is identified in a school.
“Our goal is to maximize in-person learning in schools; however, each situation will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis to ensure the appropriate individuals are quarantined,” Tioga County’s Public Health Department added in the release.
With schools going back in session this week and with Tioga County having a high level of community transmission of COVID-19, the health department is encouraging everyone over the age of 12 to get vaccinated as soon as possible. To find a location near you offering vaccines, visit www.vaccines.gov/search/.
Martha Sauerbrey, Tioga County Legislative chair, is encouraging the community to follow CDC recommendations to minimize the spread of COVID-19 in Tioga County.
Recommendations also include staying home if you are sick, and if you are having symptoms, contact your health care provider and get tested, even if you are vaccinated.
The release added, “I know this has been a long and difficult time for all of us and I understand some of you are losing your patience. If we hang on a little longer we will move on to a better day.”
Visit the health department on their Facebook Page (@Tioga County Public Health) and on their website, ph.tiogacountyny.gov, for future updates.