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COVID-19 Report for April 26, 2021

OSWEGO COUNTY – Oswego County Public Health Director Jiancheng Huang announced today, April 26, that 41 additional residents tested positive for COVID-19 in the last three days.

“There were 19 new positive cases reported on Saturday, nine reported on Sunday, and 13 reported today,” he said. “This brings the total cumulative number of positive cases since the county began monitoring for COVID-19 in March 2020 to 7,586. There are currently 195 active positive cases.”

Huang also reported that the Centers for Disease Control briefly lowered the County’s community transmission rate from “high” to “substantial” over the weekend, before returning to “high” again today. “I was glad to see the improvement in the CDC’s report in the last two days, even if we’re back to where we started from today,” he said. “It’s not surprising to see this kind of change because we’re still in a complicated period of the pandemic and any small gains are delicate.”

He added that, “Although nearly 40% of our residents have received at least one dose of the vaccine and the seven-day accumulated positive case counts are at the lowest point in the last six weeks, 75% of counties in the state are still in the ‘high community transmission’ group. We need to vaccinate many more residents to reach herd immunity. Everyone who is eligible should make an appointment and get vaccinated.”

Regardless of vaccination status, residents are urged to continue practicing the three Ws:  Wear a mask; Watch your distance; and Wash your hands frequently.

Huang also addressed some data discrepancies between the county and state websites. “The State may miss many local sources of data, but the county is checking them all,” he said. “That’s why the county’s daily and accumulated counts are usually higher than the state’s count.”

This report is current as of 3 p.m. April 26.

  • Total # of positive cases currently active: 195

The following numbers are cumulative since the county began monitoring COVID-19 in March 2020. They are updated weekdays to show new cases or changes. Those who have been released are not removed from the running total.

  • Total # of tests conducted: 197,159
  • Total # of negative results: 187,018
  • Total # of positive cases: 7,586
  • Total # of positive cases released: 7,301
  • Total deaths reported by the New York State Department of Health: 90
  • Total # of people in mandatory isolation/quarantine: 480

The Oswego County Health Department continues to work with community partners to hold COVID-19 vaccination clinics. Go to https://health.oswegocounty.com/ and click on the link for “Local Information About the COVID-19 Vaccination” for updates or call the Oswego County COVID-19 Hotline at 315-349-3330. The hotline is open from 8:30 am. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday to help people make appointments.

Huang reminds residents to keep checking back if a clinic looks like it doesn’t have any appointments available. “Sometimes appointments may become available if other people cancel or re-schedule theirs,” he said.

He also urges people who have had their first dose to not skip their appointments for the second dose. “The Moderna vaccine is a two-shot series that requires a second dose in 28 days,” he said. “If you want to be fully protected, you should not skip this appointment. Changing the date of the second dose delays full protection of the vaccine against the virus.”

He went on to explain that the health department receives second-dose vaccines based on the number of first-dose vaccines administered. “They are also scheduled to arrive for the due date of the second shot,” he said. “Logistically, it’s very difficult to give people a second shot at a later date based on the use and storage guidelines we must adhere to.”

Find more information about the three COVID-19 vaccines, click on the “Fact Sheet” link for each one at https://covid19vaccine.health.ny.gov/

All those attending an Oswego County Health Department vaccination clinic must have an appointment and bring proof of eligibility, such as proof of age. Other acceptable proofs include pay stubs, work ID, or a letter from health care provider. Those without an appointment and proof of eligibility will not be vaccinated.

The Health Department also continues to partner with Pulaski Urgent Care to bring free COVID-19 rapid testing to sites around the county. The next stop for the mobile unit will be at Paul V. Moore High School, 44 School Drive, Central Square. It runs from 8 a.m. to noon tomorrow, April 27. Registration is required. Go to health.oswegocounty.com/information/2019_novel_coronavirus/free_covid-19_testing.php.

Free transportation is provided to residents to go to COVID-19 testing and vaccination sites through a partnership between Oswego County and Oswego County Opportunities, Inc. Rides are available between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Call 315-598-1514 to schedule a ride in advance.

The Oswego County Office for the Aging can now help people aged 60 and over who need help navigating the internet in making appointments. Call 315-349-3484 for assistance.

Chairman Weatherup reminds residents that the virus continues to be widespread across the county and people should assume they can be exposed to COVID-19 anywhere they go in Central New York. “As restrictions continue to be lifted, I urge all of our residents to protect themselves every time they are in public. Now is not the time to let our guard down.”

Locations of recent public exposure are posted on the health department’s COVID-19 page at health.oswegocounty.com/covid-19.

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 health care 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.

For more information, go to the Oswego County Health Department’s COVID-19 page at health.oswegocounty.com/covid-19 or call its COVID-19 hotline at 315-349-3330. Phone lines are open from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. 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 local public health authority regarding the COVID-19 pandemic response 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.