The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

Covid-19 update

County case county hits 114; vaccines planned for youth

 

April 29, 2021



On Monday, Wahkiakum Health and Human Services reported that six more people had tested positive for covid-19 in Wahkiakum County, bringing the cumulative total to 114. Of those cases, 10 are considered active.

As of Tuesday, there had been 5,242 cases in Cowlitz County with 68 deaths attributed to covid-19. According to the weekly report from Pacific County last Wednesday, they had 936 cases, with 52 considered active and 11 deaths. Columbia and Clatsop County were reporting 1,617 cases and 932 cases respectively on Tuesday.

“We are getting almost a million new cases per day globally,” WHHS Director Chris Bischoff said. “We are not done with this yet. I know everybody wants to be done, and that definitely includes me.”

Vaccines

Johnson and Johnson has been officially un-paused, Bischoff said, adding that there had been 12 cases of blood clotting and no fatalities out of seven million doses administered. The vaccine will now come with a warning label for doctors to look for unusual blood clotting events.

Bischoff said that WHHS does not intend to order any more Johnson and Johnson unless they get several requests for it.

At the same time, WHHS has been trying to get the Pfizer vaccine into Wahkiakum County in order to immunize the 16-18 age group. They were recently able to acquire 100 doses from Pacific County.

Bischoff said he would speak to Brent Freeman, the superintendent at Wahkiakum School District about setting up a shot clinic, as well as contact the Naselle Youth Camp.

“We are going to target the Pfizer to that group and not use it on adults because we can get Moderna more easily for adults,” Bischoff said.

Anyone who is between the ages of 16-18 and would like to get on the list to get vaccinated is invited to call WHHS at 360-849-4041.

A shot clinic was set up for yesterday (Wednesday), and while 100 people were scheduled for a second dose, only 10 people had signed up for first doses as of Monday.

Because of the lack of demand, WHHS will not be ordering any more first doses until people come forward and need it, Bischoff said.

It was early for supply to move ahead of demand, Bischoff noted, acknowledging that it was likely he would be encouraging people to get vaccinated for a long time.

According to the Washington Department of Health, 37.6 percent of all Wahkiakum residents have had one dose of the vaccine and 32.2 percent are fully vaccinated.

For some reason, some people across the country are not returning for the second dose of the two dose series.

“It’s not great,” Bischoff said. “The first dose we know does give some protection, which is good, but we really need folks to have that second dose done too.”

The media story is that the second dose has more side effects, Bischoff said. He acknowledged that there was some truth to that, but the side effects were usually in line with what happened the first time, just a little worse.

“We have a ton of people who don’t have any reaction at all, to the first or second dose,” he said.

According to the literature, scientists are forecasting that the pandemic may not end this year if more people aren’t vaccinated in the next two or three months, Bischoff said.

“I’m not pushing vaccines on you for any other reason than I would like the pandemic to end,” he added. “If you are in that holdout crowd, you don’t think it’s a thing, it’s going to keep being a thing for a really long time unless we can get these numbers up. If we can’t get the vaccination rates up high enough, we are going to continue to have wave after wave, and we are going to continue to see things restricted.”

Anyone who would like a vaccination, or is having symptoms and would like to be tested, is invited to call WHHS at 360-849-4041.

 

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