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Image courtesy the Georgia Dept. of Public Health.

OSWEGO — Oswego County Public Health Director Jiancheng Huang announced Monday, April 26, that 41 additional residents tested positive for COVID-19 in the last three days.

“There were 19 new positive cases reported on Saturday, nine reported on Sunday, and 13 reported today,” he said. “This brings the total cumulative number of positive cases since the county began monitoring for COVID-19 in March 2020 to 7,586. There are currently 195 active positive cases.”

Huang also reported that the Centers for Disease Control briefly lowered the County’s community transmission rate from “high” to “substantial” over the weekend, before returning it to “high” again today. “I was glad to see the improvement in the CDC’s report in the last two days, even if we’re back to where we started from today,” he said. “It’s not surprising to see this kind of change because we’re still in a complicated period of the pandemic and any small gains are delicate.”

He added that, “Although nearly 40% of our residents have received at least one dose of the vaccine and the seven-day accumulated positive case counts are at the lowest point in the last six weeks, 75% of counties in the state are still in the ‘high community transmission’ group. We need to vaccinate many more residents to reach herd immunity. Everyone who is eligible should make an appointment and get vaccinated.”

Regardless of vaccination status, residents are urged to continue practicing the three Ws: Wear a mask; Watch your distance; and Wash your hands frequently.

Huang also addressed some data discrepancies between the county and state websites. “The State may miss many local sources of data, but the county is checking them all,” he said. “That’s why the county’s daily and accumulated counts are usually higher than the state’s count.”

This report is current as of 3 p.m. April 26.

Total - of positive cases currently active: 195

The following numbers are cumulative since the county began monitoring COVID-19 in March 2020. They are updated weekdays to show new cases or changes. Those who have been released are not removed from the running total.

Total - of tests conducted: 197,159

Total - of negative results: 187,018

Total - of positive cases: 7,586

Total - of positive cases released: 7,301

Total deaths reported by the New York State Department of Health: 90

Total - of people in mandatory isolation/quarantine: 480

The Oswego County Health Department continues to work with community partners to hold COVID-19 vaccination clinics. Go to https://health.oswegocounty.com/ and click on the link for “Local Information About the COVID-19 Vaccination” for updates or call the Oswego County COVID-19 Hotline at 315-349-3330. The hotline is open from 8:30 am. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday to help people make appointments.

Huang reminds residents to keep checking back if a clinic looks like it doesn’t have any appointments available. “Sometimes appointments may become available if other people cancel or re-schedule theirs,” he said.

He also urges people who have had their first dose to not skip their appointments for the second dose. “The Moderna vaccine is a two-shot series that requires a second dose in 28 days,” he said. “If you want to be fully protected, you should not skip this appointment. Changing the date of the second dose delays full protection of the vaccine against the virus.”

He went on to explain that the health department receives second-dose vaccines based on the number of first-dose vaccines administered. “They are also scheduled to arrive for the due date of the second shot,” he said. “Logistically, it’s very difficult to give people a second shot at a later date based on the use and storage guidelines we must adhere to.”

Chairman Weatherup reminds residents that the virus continues to be widespread across the county and people should assume they can be exposed to COVID-19 anywhere they go in Central New York. “As restrictions continue to be lifted, I urge all of our residents to protect themselves every time they are in public. Now is not the time to let our guard down.”

Locations of recent public exposure are posted on the health department’s COVID-19 page at health.oswegocounty.com/covid-19.

Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, chills, repeated shaking with chills, gastrointestinal illness and new loss of taste or smell.

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Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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