COVID-19 instances climbing right here, however how excessive? | Information, Sports activities, Jobs

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Pandemic fatigue and home testing have contributed to a loss of awareness of how COVID-19 is spreading across the US as public health officials use hospital data as the primary source. In other places where outbreaks occur, such as China, mass testing is still the norm. A tester is pictured wearing a hazmat suit wiping the throat of a boy for a COVID-19 test at a coronavirus testing site in Beijing on Wednesday, May 25, after the city’s Chaoyang district ordered all residents to to get tested. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)

NEW ULM — Brown County director of public health Karen Moritz told the county board Tuesday that lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in Brown County rose to 126 in May.

The number of cases is now the highest since early February. Moritz said there were six COVID hospitalizations in May, nine in April and four in March.

Moritz said she was not aware of any COVID-related deaths in May.

Brown County COVID hospitalizations peaked at 62 in November 2020, declined this past summer and started rising again this past fall, reaching 35 in October 2021 and 313 in January 2022.

The number of cases in children is slowly rising, having passed the 100 mark in January 2022. Case numbers for people under the age of 18 were 10% in April and May 2022. They peaked in May 2021 at 35% and in October 2021 at 31%.

Moritz said people need to be aware of how to deal with rising COVID rates.

“Immunocompromised people should consider masking themselves indoors. Tests should be done if you are symptomatic.” She said.

“A lot of people are doing home testing now. That’s probably the norm now. All clinics are still testing Moritz told The Journal on Wednesday.

She said positive COVID-19 tests done at home would not be reported to public health. She added that people who test positive must quarantine and isolate for 10 days, the first five days at home.

If they feel better after five days and don’t have a fever, people can go back out in public but should wear masks.

“People can still order (COVID) tests from the state of Minnesota and the federal government.” Added Moritz.

“It’s important that people have access to testing. Home tests have shown that. People can isolate and notify others if exposed to prevent spread.” said Moritz.

“Home testing doesn’t give a really clear picture of COVID, but we have hospitalization numbers and wastewater monitoring is being done.” She added.

Moritz stressed the need for vaccination of the public.

“Booster shots are available for children aged 5 to 11. People aged 50 and over should get a second booster shot.” She said. “The effectiveness of the vaccine remains high. It reduces hospital admissions and deaths.”

(Fritz Busch can be contacted by email at [email protected])

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