FCPH reports 3 more COVID deaths

Big week expected for vaccination clinics in Fayette Co.

Staff reports - and The Associated Press

Fayette County Public Health (FCPH) reported three more COVID-19 related deaths in the community on Monday — a male in his 70s, a male in his 80s, and a female in her 80s.

“Please respect the privacy of their families as they mourn the loss of their loves ones,” read a statement from FCPH.

Since the pandemic began, Fayette County has had a total of 33 deaths, 2,493 COVID-19 cases with 2,177 presumed recoveries, and 207 hospitalizations.

This week is expected to be the county’s biggest week yet for COVID vaccinations for individuals who are 75-years-old and older. FCPH staff will operate mass vaccination clinics for those who are receiving their second doses, those who are receiving their first doses, as well as two closed clinics for K-12 schools.

“The vaccine supply is extremely limited,” read a statement from FCPH. “We appreciate everyone’s patience as we work quickly to vaccinate those in our community who choose to be vaccinated.”

According to FCPH, it will take several weeks before it is able to schedule 65-69-year-olds.

As of Thursday, FCPH reported that 377 county residents have completed their vaccinations (1.32% of the population) and 1,692 residents have received their first shots (5.93% of the population).

Fayette County Public Vaccination Providers – This information is for the week of Feb. 8

Fayette County Public Health – FCPH will continue scheduling age-eligible individuals based upon vaccine availability. If you are pre-registered, you do not need to register again. FCPH will call you to schedule when the vaccine is available. Visit faycohd.org to pre-register.

Fayette County Memorial Hospital (FCMH) – FCMH is now scheduling appointments for persons 70 years of age and older. Please call 740-333-2743.

HealthSource of Ohio – HealthSource of Ohio will schedule appointments next week with limited availability for age-eligible individuals. Call (740) 335-8490. Online, visit: healthsourceofohio.org

Kroger – Next week Kroger pharmacies will only be providing vaccines to the current phase/included populations, seniors 65-plus. Visit //kroger.com/ohiocovidvaccine or call the Kroger COVID-19 vaccine helpline at 866-211-5320 for the latest information on vaccine availability in your area.

Walgreens – Next week, Walgreens is vaccinating individuals who are eligible per the criteria established by the Ohio Department of Health (65+). For an appointment, it is recommended to schedule online at walgreens.com/schedulevaccine. You may also call 740-335-3180.

Transportation – The Fayette County Transportation Program will transport anyone in Fayette County who needs to get their vaccine appointment, as long as they have a confirmed appointment scheduled. Anyone who needs transportation is asked to call 740-335-9628 to schedule as soon as they have an appointment time for the vaccine.

K-12 Schools – FCPH is working directly with the school districts to coordinate vaccination clinics for their employees.

For more information about Ohio’s vaccination distribution program, visit vaccine.coronavirus.ohio.gov.

The drive to vaccinate Americans against the coronavirus is gaining speed and newly recorded cases have fallen to their lowest level in three months, but authorities worry that raucous Super Bowl celebrations could fuel new outbreaks.

More than 4 million more vaccinations were reported over the weekend, a significantly faster clip than in previous days, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Nearly one in 10 Americans have now received at least one shot. But just 2.9% of the U.S. population has been fully vaccinated, a long way from the 70% or more that experts say must be inoculated to conquer the outbreak.

Newly confirmed infections have declined to an average of 117,000 a day, the lowest point since early November. That is a steep drop from the peak of nearly 250,000 a day in early January.

The number of Americans in the hospital with COVID-19 has also fallen sharply to about 81,000, down from more than 130,000 last month.

Health officials say the decline in hospitalizations and new cases most likely reflects an easing of the surge that was fueled by holiday gatherings, and perhaps better adherence to safety precautions.

The drop-off in new cases comes as fewer tests for the virus are being reported. But experts say the decline in cases is real. It is more pronounced than the apparent slowdown in testing, and it is accompanied by other encouraging signs.

“We are seeing a real decline because it’s been sustained over time and it’s correlated with decreasing hospitalizations,” said Dr. Amesh Adalja, an infectious disease specialist at Johns Hopkins University. “That tells you that there does seem to be something afoot.”

The question, he said, is whether the lower numbers can be sustained as new variants of the virus take hold in the United States. President Joe Biden has announced plans to spend billions to increase rapid testing by the summer.

COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. are still running at close to all-time highs, at an average of about 3,160 per day, down about 200 since mid-January. The death toll overall has eclipsed 460,000.

Federal officials are warning states not to relax restrictions on dining out and other social activities.

“We have yet to control this pandemic,” Dr. Rochelle Walensky, head of the CDC, said Monday.

The sight of fans, many without masks, celebrating the Super Bowl in the streets, in sports bars and at game-watching parties has sparked worries of new outbreaks.

“This isn’t how we should be celebrating the Super Bowl,” the mayor of St. Petersburg, Florida, Rick Kriseman, tweeted after a maskless party was hosted by Rapper Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson in a hangar at the city’s airport, not far from where the Tampa Bay Buccaneers won the title.

“It’s not safe or smart. It’s stupid. We’re going to take a very close look at this, and it may end up costing someone a lot more than 50 cent.”

Police in Charleston, South Carolina, issued citations to nearly 50 people for not wearing masks in public during Sunday’s game.

Richard Medina of Los Angeles attended a friend’s backyard game party on Sunday, though he knew case numbers in Southern California remain high.

“It was outdoors, and felt like it was going to be pretty chill,” said Medina, who spent most of the past year in isolation with a roommate who hates sports. He enjoyed the escape but decided to leave after awhile.

“More people started showing up later, and it felt like the more people drank, the more they started getting sloppy about masks and keeping their distance,” he said.

Big week expected for vaccination clinics in Fayette Co.

Staff reports

and The Associated Press