Dr. Memark reports uptick in Cobb COVID cases

Janet Memark speaks at Healthy Start meeting used in article about COVID cases in CobbJanet Memark speaks at Healthy Start meeting (photo by Larry Felton Johnson)

At the July 13 Cobb County Board of Commissioners meeting this morning Dr. Janet Memark, the District Health Director for Cobb & Douglas Public Health, reported an uptick in COVID cases in Cobb County, possibly driven by the relaxing of restrictions, the more contagious Delta variant of the disease, and the effects of the July 4 weekend.

“We’re at 75 cases per 100,000,” said Dr. Memark while displaying a graph of recent cases. “And you can see a slight upward trend towards the end of the graph there.”

“It’s thought that maybe we are seeing some cases from the Fourth of July weekend and the lifting of a lot of a lot of restrictions that happened simultaneously,” she said.

“We’re also watching the percentage rate that has also come up a little bit as well,” she said. “We’re up to 2.3 percent, which is still in a safer range of under 5 percent. But you see over on the chart over there, we are seeing an uptick in the positivity rate as well.”

“So these are things that we definitely need to be aware of, especially if you were non-vaccinated,” she said.

Dr. Memark also said that in Cobb and nationwide the hospitalizations and deaths from COVID are almost exclusively among unvaccinated individuals.

She pointed to Missouri as one of the national hot spots for COVID.

“Missouri is dealing with a pretty big surge in hospitalizations at this time,” Dr. Memark said. “And their issues seem to be from the Delta variant, as well as having low vaccination rates throughout their communities.”

Dr. Memark reported on the rapid spread of the Delta variant, but also reported that the current vaccines seem to provide protection against it.

“It is definitely much more transmissible,” she said. “But the good news is that it is susceptible to the vaccines that we have at this time.”

“What they’re seeing throughout the nation is those that are hospitalized or dying from COVID-19 at this point, are almost exclusively unvaccinated,” she said. “They are seeing younger folks that are being hospitalized and dying and they are unvaccinated people at this point. So this is why the vaccine is so important.”

Watch Dr. Memark’s COVID update at about the 2:10 mark on the video