Covid cases continue to rise statewide, fifteen active in Madison County
It's been a while since Madison County Public Health Director Emilie Sayler provided a Covid-19 update for Madison County Commissioners, but with cases on the rise statewide Sayler was back at the commissioner’s meeting with an update on August 17.
Fifteen active Covid cases were reported in Madison County on the 17th. With the county fair ending recently Sayler expects to see an uptick in confirmed cases in the coming days.
“We’ll have some cases falling off, but we’re getting new cases each day,” said Sayler. “So if we can stay right there (at 15 cases) we will be happy, but it’s probably going to increase in the coming days.”
As of August 15 no Madison County residents were hospitalized due to the virus. Over the past few weeks, however, several residents have required hospitalization and have since been discharged.
“It’s also important to note that every one of those hospitalizations has been an unvaccinated person,” said Sayler.
In line with what has been seen across the nation Sayler noted that some of these hospitalizations have been in younger demographics: a 21-year-old was hospitalized but did not require intensive care; a 35-year-old that did require intensive care for an extended period.
“So, we are seeing younger folks getting very sick,” said Sayler. “And again, they are not vaccinated.”
Statewide there were 120,325 cumulative cases, 2,742 of those active as of August 17 with 191 active hospitalizations. That number conveys a big increase since midsummer, the last time Sayler updated the commissioners on the state’s Covid situation.
“We were right around 50 to 55 at that point, so in a short period, about a month, we have seen that quadruple almost,” said Sayler.
Neighboring Silverbow County, with 70 active cases, has seen a dramatic increase in Covid cases, prompting the county’s schools on August 16 to mandate mask wearing for staff and students for the first month of the school year.
Forty-six percent of Madison County residents are now fully vaccinated, falling short of the 70% goal set by the CDC. Sayler said she’s heard from a number of vaccine hesitant residents who are forgoing the jab due in part to its rapid approval. Recent word that the Pfizer vaccine may garner full FDA approval next month has Sayler hopeful those currently holding off will reconsider.
As of August 15, just under 70% of Madison County residents in their 70s have had at least one dose; those in their 80s are at 74%. For residents in their 50’s however, only 30% have pursued at least one shot. Youth aged 12 to 17 are eligible for the Pfizer vaccine which is not offered in Madison County. Despite that, 16% of Madison County youth in that age group have gotten at least one shot.
“Which I think is a huge success,” said Sayler, noting that the pre-teens and teens’ families would have had to seek out a mobile clinic or head out of county to get the vaccine. “I think it is a good show of effort.”