There aren’t as many people routinely wearing face masks as there were this time last year, which is one indication that things are improving on the COVID-19 front. Or, perhaps people are just plain tired of wearing masks.
But public health professionals study and analyze the public’s health from a variety of perspectives to make sure people stay as safe as possible from disease. It’s important to know the why’s and wherefore’s, but the bottom line is that fewer cases of COVID-19 places both Vance and Granville counties are in the low community level.
Granville Vance Public Health Director Lisa Harrison and her staff continue to monitor both counties and stay updated on the latest information available.
Both counties, like much of the rest of the state, experienced a real spike in cases in January 2022, but the numbers had begun inching upward by November of 2021. By March 2022, the number of cases had dropped again to about the same levels that were being recorded before the winter surge.
As winter approaches, staying up-to-date on COVID-19 boosters is important, as is getting a flu shot.
Harrison spelled out in her regular COVID-19 update that health professionals must look at indicators other than just numbers of cases.
“Case numbers are not as reliable an indicator as they once were – people can use at-home testing kits and do not report those test results to public health,” she said.
Vaccinations and the all-important boosters also lower the risk of severe illness and death, she said, so looking at trends over time offers a more complete view.
Data indicators that health professionals look at include:
- Virus particles found in wastewater
- Emergency room visits for COVID symptoms
- Health system strain and hospitalizations from COVID-19
- Vaccines and boosters
- Surveillance of new Variants
- CDC COVID-19 community levels by county
And while it’s good news that both counties are in the low community level, Harrison included the following sobering statistics:
Vance County has had 14,655 COVID-19 cases and Granville County has reported 18,006. As for deaths from COVID -19, Vance County reports 130 and Granville County reports 124.
Vaccinations by the numbers:
- 68 percent of those over the age of 5 have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine
- 63 percent are vaccinated with initial series complete
- 5 percent have received the new booster
- 24 percent of those ages 5-11 have gotten at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine
- 18 percent are vaccinated with initial series complete
- 52 percent of those ages 12-17 have had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine
- 45 percent are vaccinated with initial series complete
- 71 percent of those over 5 years have had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine
- 67 percent are vaccinated with initial series complete
- 6 percent have had the new booster
- 26 percent of those 5-11 years have had have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine
- 22 percent are vaccinated with initial series complete
- 45 percent of those 12-17 years have had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine
- 42 percent are vaccinated with initial series complete
Visit the CDC Data Tracker by County and the NCDHHS COVID-19 Dashboard. Relevant graphs from these dashboards are available on our website at https://gvph.org/covid-19_dashboard/.