Published 11:47 pm Saturday, January 9, 2021
Lowndes County is currently ranked No.4 in new COVID-19 cases per capita.
Lowndes County, like most Alabama counties, are in the critical risk category, which is the highest on the scale, according to healthweather.us.
Daily new cases are considered very high with a rate of 126 per 100,000, which is currently fourth highest in Alabama.
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The forecast is that COVID-19 is spreading in Lowndes County.
Crenshaw County is first with the rate of 154 per 100,000.
Hale County is second in the state at 150 cases per 100,000.
Autauga County comes in third at 136 cases per 100,000.
COVID-19 vaccinations are rolling out, which are expected to help.
Governor Kay Ivey and the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) on Friday announced that ADPH will provide COVID-19 vaccinations for people 75 years old or older, as well as first responders, including law enforcement and firefighters, statewide by appointment only effective Jan. 18. Appointments at locations throughout the state are made first come, first served. The addition of these groups is not a full expansion into the next phase of the vaccine rollout.
“I appreciate the swift work of ADPH to establish a system to efficiently provide our limited resources of vaccine to as many Alabamians as possible,” Governor Ivey said. “We have previously worked to provide vaccines to our health care workers who are on the front lines of the pandemic, and now, are diligently working to expand access to our seniors, law enforcement officers and various members of our first responders. It is critical for everyone to remain patient; demand is high, and supply is low. ADPH and their partners are working around-the-clock to assist as many people as they can.”
Alabama continues to vaccinate more than 326,000 health care workers and nursing home residents who are most at-risk of contracting COVID-19. As the vaccine uptake for this category is satisfied, ADPH is now encouraging sites to vaccinate persons in the 75-plus age group and those in the law enforcement and firefighter vocations in order to prevent any loss of vaccine due to cold chain storage requirements.
“We recognize that demand for vaccine exceeds supply,” said State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris. “While there is still an insufficient amount of the vaccine supply, we want to maximize our resources to help protect Alabamians at high risk. County health departments are working with their local points of distribution to assess what their vaccination reach has been. Decisions about the next groups to vaccinate are made at the community level with community engagement. If the very high-risk population has been covered adequately, providers can then begin vaccinating people in the other priority groups.”
Nearly 350,000 people in the state of Alabama would qualify for a vaccine at 75 years old and older.
To schedule an appointment for the free COVID-19 vaccination, individuals may call the ADPH toll-free phone number at 1-855-566-5333. Telephone calls are answered from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. seven days a week.
Vaccination locations can be viewed at this link, https://go.usa.gov/xARKp and additional specific information, such as what to bring and what to wear, will be provided when appointments are made.
If wanting to be vaccinated at sites other than a county health department, such as a private provider, individuals should contact those sites directly.
For information about COVID-19 vaccines, visit https://go.usa.gov/xARKE.
The Centers for Disease Control continues to emphasize there are three ways to help slow the spread.
- Wear a maskto protect yourself and others and stop the spread of COVID-19.
- Stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arm lengths)from others who don’t live with you.
- Avoid crowds. The more people you are in contact with, the more likely you are to be exposed to COVID-19.
Additionally, residents should:
Avoid poorly ventilated spaces
- Avoid indoor spaces that do not offer fresh air from the outdoors as much as possible. If indoors, bring in fresh air by opening windows and doors, if possible.
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Wash your hands often
- Wash your handsoften with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- Always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow and do not spit.
- Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
- If surfaces are dirty, clean them. Use detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.
- Then, use a household disinfectant.
Monitor Your Health Daily
- Be alert for symptoms. Watch for fever, cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19.
- Take your temperature if symptoms develop.
- Don’t take your temperature within 30 minutes of exercising or after taking medications that could lower your temperature, like acetaminophen.
- Follow CDC guidance if symptoms develop.