Immunization rate approaches three-quarters of those eligible for Delco – Delco Times
Nearly three-quarters of eligible Delaware County residents are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
Delaware County medical adviser Dr Lisa O’Mahony said the county reached that number in late September. It does not include those 12 and under who are not yet eligible for vaccines. In addition to the nearly 300,000 fully vaccinated, 34,811 others received a partial injection of the vaccine and more than 90 percent of people 65 years of age and over were fully vaccinated.
According to the Pennsylvania Department of Health, 7,334 residents have received a Pfizer vaccine booster.
“The more people who are immune, the better we are going to enter the respiratory season,” she said. “The chances of being hospitalized or dying once vaccinated are very low.”
“Delaware County still remains in a high risk of transmission situation although some of the variables tend to go down,” O’Mahony said in an interview Monday. “We really need to be on our toes. “
O’Mahoney said young adults are the ones who haven’t been immunized and need to be vaccinated.
There have been 583 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported in the county in the past seven days, she said. The previous week there were 549 new cases.
“This is an upward trend, with new confirmed cases reported, the incidence rate is on the rise slightly according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health, that number is 102.9 per 100,000,” O ‘said Mahony.
To exit the high transmission category, cases must fall below 100 cases per 100,000 population. Low transmission rate should be less than 10, moderate transmission is 10 to 49, and substantial is 50 to 99 cases per 100,000.
O’Mahony noted that trends over time become more important than the raw numbers. She also noted that the pandemic continues to be one of the unvaccinated.
“They are the ones who end up in the hospital, they have the highest morbidity and mortality and spread the virus,” she said.
Positive PCR tests in the last seven days are at a rate of 5.2%, which is in a moderate range, but health officials are opting for the more conservative number of cases to be cautious in recommendations for population.
“The new cases per 100,000 are still high, but the percentage of positives puts us at a moderate level,” she said. O’Mahony also noted that Delaware County was doing slightly better than Philadelphia, Montgomery and Chester counties with infection rates.
O’Mahony said hospitalization data and ventilator data were also following a stable trend.
If you look at the average daily number of COVID patients on ventilators over the past seven days, it was 5.1%. The previous seven days were 4.7, so it has increased slightly, she said.
“If you look at the percentage of hospital emergency room visits due to COVID-type illnesses, it has remained the same at 1.4%. The previous seven days were 1.6 percent. Very slightly downward trend, ”she said.
O’Mahony said the death rate was falling. She noted a number of reasons for this, including the fact that younger people contract the virus as well as the success of older residents getting vaccinated. Another reason has been improved treatment in hospitals as the medical community has learned how to deal with the virus.
“That said, young people are still dying needlessly from COVID, it’s not zero. People shouldn’t be relaxed about the morbidity or mortality from COVID, it always happens in younger unvaccinated populations, ”she said.
O’Mahoney acknowledged efforts by schools to limit the spread.
“Schools have done a great job in their mitigation strategies, they have remained relatively weak in schools and they are safe sailing,” she said. “Between the masks and the distancing and the testing, schools have done a remarkable job of minimizing cases of COVID,” they’ve done an incredibly excellent job. “
All three vaccines are available at the County Health Center in Yeadon.
As flu season approaches, O’Mahony recommends that residents get the flu shot. Delaware County will offer three drive-thru flu vaccination clinics in the coming weeks. This Thursday they will have free injections for ages 3 and up at Tinicum Fire Co. between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Many pharmacies also offer free injections which are paid for through the federal Affordable Care Act program.
On Friday March 15 flu shots will be offered at Middletown Fire Co. and Thursday March 21 at Broomall Fire Co.
“The reasons you want to get the flu shot are the overlapping flu and COVID symptoms and we’re seeing a difference in respiratory viruses in general last year,” O’Mahony said. “Things like RSV (respiratory syncytial virus infection) and Croup are much higher and it’s not clear if the flu will be much higher this season. t so much interaction.
According to the Center for Disease Control, RSV can be dangerous for some infants and young children. Each year in the United States, an estimated 58,000 children under the age of 5 are hospitalized with RSV infection. Hospitals have reported numerous cases of RSV in recent weeks.