Latest, encouraging, report on COVID in Cobb from Dr. Memark

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)

Dr. Janet Memark District Health Director for Cobb & Douglas Public Health, issued the following message yesterday with encouraging news on the trajectory of the COVID-19 pandemic:

Good afternoon Cobb and Douglas Counties.

It is really my pleasure to bring to you your update on the COVID-19 pandemic for our district. Throughout the nation, state and locally, we are seeing a decline is COVID-19 numbers, hospitalizations and now deaths. In Cobb County, the last 2 week case rates are 152 cases/100,000 people and 115 cases/100,000 people in Douglas County. The corresponding positive percentage numbers for PCR tests are 4.6 and 4.4%! This will be last time that we will report COVID cases numbers to you in this fashion. The CDC has finally updated its COVID metrics, and we will now do the same.

When you go to their website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/covid-data/covidview/index.html, you can now see how your community is doing in regards to COVID-19. These statuses are now based on:

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  • New COVID-19 Admissions per 100,000 population over 7 days.
  • Percent  of staffed Inpatient beds occupied by COVID -19 patients (7 day average)
  • New COVID-19 cases/100,000 people in 7 days

You can now see what the recommendations are for your community level.
 
Currently, both counties are at MEDIUM risk level and recommendations are:

Remember, you should still wear a mask if you are immunocompromised, at the end of COVID isolation, have symptoms, or are a close contact.

Also, new in vaccine news is that the interval for COVID-19 vaccinations for children 12-18 has now changed to 3-8 weeks after the first dose. Remember this is referring to the Pfizer vaccine. The reason for this change is to further decrease the risk of having the rare side effect of myocarditis for adolescent boys. It has been found that increasing the interval between shots further decreases the risk.

You can find more details about vaccine intervals at: 
https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/clinical-considerations/covid-19-vaccines-us.html

I know many of you are wondering if “this is the end?” I can’t tell you for sure that the pandemic is over, but I can say that we have taken a big hit with the Omicron variant and many were infected. Also, many were saved due to having been vaccinated. At this point, we don’t see a variant of concern on the horizon, so that is very promising.

It has been my pleasure to update you today on COVID-19. Thank you for all that you have done to keep our community safe. We look forward to continued good news in the future.

Sincerely, 

Janet Pak Memark M.D., M.P.H, F.A.C.P.
District Health Director
District 3-1: Cobb & Douglas Public Health

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