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COVID-19 Report for Jan. 7, 2021

OSWEGO COUNTY – Oswego County Public Health Director Jiancheng Huang announced today, Jan. 7, that 69 additional residents have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total number of positive cases to 4,234. There are two additional COVID-19 related deaths in Oswego County.

“I would like to express our condolences to the families and friends of these two patients,” said Huang. “This is a reminder that the virus is rampant in our county and we all must do our part to protect our families and communities. We must reduce the number of positive cases. This is paramount to preventing future deaths.”

The COVID-19 vaccine is becoming available, on a limited scale, through the New York State Vaccination Program. The State’s Department of Health has set strict schedules for priority groups to be vaccinated and Oswego Health and the Oswego County Health Department are executing vaccinations according to that guidance.

“Last night, we held our first vaccination clinic for these priority groups according to the State’s schedule and the implementation was quite successful,” said Huang.

Oswego County Medical Director Dr. Christina Liepke added, “I am very thankful that Oswego Health was willing to share with us their experience in holding COVID-19 vaccination clinics, which they did very effectively in December. Their collaboration was one of the many keys to the success of this effort. It was wonderful to see so many health care providers from our community eager to come get vaccinated. We are looking forward to holding more vaccination efforts to stem the tide of this pandemic.”

Currently, all frontline health care workers are being vaccinated. This includes out-patient health care workers, public health staff, dentists, diagnostic and treatment center staff, occupational therapists, physical therapists, speech therapists, residents of nursing homes and staff of skilled nursing facilities and adult care facilities. Hospice and home care workers will be added to the eligibility list next week. The next priority group, which will include residents aged 75 and older and essential workers (as defined by NYSDOH) will become eligible around Feb. 1.

Huang reminded residents that, given the priority groups established by New York State and the 15 to 20 minutes of post injection observation recommended by the CDC, the health department cannot operate clinics on a ‘walk-in’ or ‘drive-thru’ basis. He said, “As we’ve stated before, this process will take several months. We will continue to keep you informed when the vaccine is made available within the New York State guidelines.”

This report is current as of 3 p.m. Jan. 7.

Please know that these numbers fluctuate frequently. Recovered people are not deducted from the total number of positive cases.

  • Total # of tests conducted: 111,656
  • Total # of positive cases: 4,234
  • Total # of positive cases released: 3,135
  • Total deaths reported by the New York State Department of Health: 51
  • Total # of positive cases active: 1,048
  • Total # of negative results: 105,964
  • Total # of people in mandatory isolation/quarantine: 1,629

Oswego County Legislature Chairman James Weatherup reminded residents that the virus is widespread throughout the county and people should assume they can be exposed to COVID-19 anywhere they go in Central New York.

“I urge all of our residents to take action and do their part to stop the spread of this disease,” said Chairman Weatherup. “Wear a face mask over your nose and mouth in public, wash your hands frequently and practice social distancing. Comply with isolation and quarantine rules and, most importantly, avoid non-essential gatherings.”

Locations of potential public exposure are posted on the health department’s COVID-19 page at health.oswegocounty.com/covid-19. The public is urged to protect themselves as if they could potentially be exposed every time they are in public.

Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, chills, repeated shaking with chills, gastrointestinal illness and new loss of taste or smell.

Health officials strongly urge residents to take these precautions:

  • Stay home if you are sick and keep your children home if they are sick.
  • Wear a face mask or covering over your nose and mouth.
  • Avoid non-essential gatherings of all types.
  • Keep six feet from other people.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially before eating.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Call your healthcare provider from home if you are experiencing symptoms such as a fever, cough, or shortness of breath.
  • Do not go to the emergency department unless you are experiencing life-threatening conditions.

More information is posted on the health department’s COVID-19 page at health.oswegocounty.com/covid-19.

Call the Oswego County Health Department COVID-19 hotline at  315-349-3330 if you have any questions. The hotline will be closed Friday, Jan. 1 for New Year's Day. Otherwise, it is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. For information about emotional supports, visit the Oswego County Department of Social Services Division of Mental Hygiene at www.oswegocounty.com/mentalhygiene.

New York State provides online links to report violations of health and safety restrictions and requirements for businesses, gatherings and individuals. To file a complaint about a business, location or incident in your community, go to https://mylicense.custhelp.com/app/ask. To file a complaint against your employer or place of work, go to https://labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/coronavirus-complaints.shtm.

Under New York State Public Health Law, the Oswego County Health Department is the sole local public health authority regarding the COVID-19 pandemic response over all persons and entities within the County of Oswego. The Oswego County Health Department works closely with New York State Department of Health regarding COVID-19 monitoring, response and reporting.