HUNTINGTON, WV (WOWK) – The Cabell-Huntington Health Department says the county is seeing an increase of COVID-19 cases in recent weeks and health officials are closely monitoring the situation.
The announcement comes just days after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new guidance for wearing masks as the Delta variant of COVID-19 continues to spread. In their guidance, the CDC said two-thirds of counties in the U.S. had what health officials consider either substantial or high levels of COVID-19 spread.
Cabell County is listed as substantial on the CDC’s map, meaning the county has between 50 and 99.99 new cases per 100,00 people or a positive Nucleic Acid Amplification Tests (NAAT) percentage between 8% and 9.99%, the county is considered as having high transmission.
A large concern with the Delta variant is while vaccination is effective in reducing the risk of severe illness, hospitalization and death, even vaccinated people can spread the Delta variant to other people or contract the virus in a breakthrough case.
Health experts say the amount of exposure to the virus and an individual’s immune system or health conditions could play roles in the virus’s ability to break through the virus’s effectiveness.
The CHHD says the CDC’s new guidance on the virus can help reduce people’s risk of contracting the virus. For counties listed as substantial, such as Cabell, or high, meaning the rate of infection is even worse, the CDC has made the following recommendations:
- Anyone 2-years-old and above who is able to wear a mask, including those who are fully immunized, should wear a mask in indoor public spaces.
- Those who have respiratory symptoms similar to those of COVID-19 should get tested for the virus. This includes vaccinated people who are either showing symptoms or who have been in direct contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19. Those in direct contact with someone who has COVID-19 should get tested three to five days after contact.
- The symptoms include common symptoms such as a runny nose, sore throat, fever, headache, fatigue or cough as well as other symptoms connected to the virus.
- Follow directions provided by health department disease investigators and contact tracers regarding quarantine and isolation.
- Agencies with recommendations to follow local disease guidelines, should engage in protocols associated with substantial spread by the CDC.
The Cabell-Huntington Health Department has free COVID-19 testing available Mondays through Fridays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For information on vaccination clinics or COVID-19 testing sites in the county, visit the CHHD’s website.