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Health officer: Wear masks indoors

North Olympic Peninsula well being officers are urging residents to put on masks whereas indoors this vacation weekend as COVID-19 continues to be ever current.

“We are still seeing a ton of transmission in our community and we really haven’t seen our numbers tip down in any significant way,” stated Dr. Allison Berry, well being officer for Clallam and Jefferson counties, on Friday.

While most Fourth of July weekend festivities might be going down outdoors, it’s the indoor areas or areas the place there are lots of people shut collectively the place folks ought to take into account carrying masks, Berry stated.

“In the vast majority of outdoor spaces, you are still really unlikely to contract COVID-19,” she stated.

”I’d say if you’ll be actually packed into some place, like watching a parade and standing in a single place for a protracted time frame, shoulder-to-shoulder with different folks, that may be a time the place you may take into account carrying a masks,” Berry added.

Berry and different well being officers have repeatedly really useful that individuals buy and put on high-quality masks all through the pandemic, however have extra not too long ago famous that the present variants of COVID-19 circulating proper now, BA. 4 and BA.5 are significantly contagious and may get round even surgical masks.

“While a surgical mask is better than nothing in those spaces, it’s really important to wear a good quality mask when you are indoors with a lot of people,” Berry stated.

Infections with the newer variants have been seen even in those that are vaccinated towards Covid.

“We have seen a lot of breakthrough infection for people that are fully vaccinated, even in folks that are boosted can still get COVID-19, especially if they are in close indoor proximity with other people,” Berry stated.

“But we are still seeing the vaccines doing a great job at preventing severe disease.”

Those not getting COVID-19 proper now principally are those that proceed to masks in indoor areas and people who have had a previous an infection however have additionally been vaccinated and boosted.

“That’s the crew that not getting infected. It’s the people that got all three doses of the vaccine and then, unfortunately, had a breakthrough infection, and we are not seeing reinfection of that group,” Berry stated.

There has been some query about whether or not one other spherical of vaccines/ boosters might be wanted for adults and kids who’ve already been vaccinated and boosted.

Berry stated that there’s some work being accomplished to discover a possible vaccine for the autumn that may additionally cowl the annual flu photographs, however it isn’t a positive factor at this level.

“There is definitely consideration of a fall vaccine that would cover a broad spectrum of viruses including COVID-19, but it all kind of still in very early stages,” Berry stated.

Clallam and Jefferson County not too long ago transitioned to a weekly COVID-19 reporting system, which updates each Monday at midday.

Clallam County reported on Monday a complete of 13,764 circumstances because the pandemic started, with a case fee of 707 per 100,000.

Jefferson County reported a complete of 4,657 circumstances because the pandemic started, with a case fee of 979 per 100,000.

Case charges are a mirrored image of circumstances reported throughout a two-week interval. They are computed utilizing a formulation primarily based on a 100,000 inhabitants even for counties that wouldn’t have 100,000 folks residing in them.

Since the Fourth of July happens on a Monday this yr, subsequent week’s COVID-19 numbers might be up to date on Tuesday.


Reporter Ken Park could be reached at [email protected].

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