The Delta variant of COVID-19 is making its presence known in Delaware, and Otsego Counties. According to the Otsego County Department of Health, the virus is spreading quickest in areas where coronavirus vaccinations are the lowest. It certainly doesn't mean that those vaccinated can't get it. Otsego County Health officials say the virus seems to be hitting the unvaccinated population the most. Health officials say that those vaccinated are less likely to contract the Delta variant, or if they do, symptoms are typically milder than they might be if the person was not vaccinated. Masking in public is highly recommended right now for everyone to hinder the spread of the virus.

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Both Otsego County and Delaware County (DCPH) health departments have recently issued statements saying that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has determined that in the two counties there is a "substantial transmission" rate of the COVID-19 virus going on right now and case numbers are starting to climb significantly each day. "Substantial transmission" is defined as an 8 to 9.99% positivity rate in the last 7 days.

With this latest development in mind, health officials and the CDC recommend that everyone (including those vaccinated), wear masks at indoor public places to curb the transmission rate. For those unvaccinated, the continuing message is "get vaccinated as soon as possible".

Currently, the vaccination rate in Delaware County's population 18 and older with at least one dose of the vaccine is 56.7%. In Otsego County, the percentage of residents 18 and older with at least one dose is 63.5%, and in Chenango County, 64.6% are at least partially vaccinated.

Let's take a look at COVID case numbers locally:

Looking at COVID-19 case numbers reported by The Otsego County Department of Health (8/8): There are currently 65 known active cases (doubled from last week), with 2 people hospitalized with COVID-related in the county with a total of 64 COVID-19 related deaths. The Health Dept. has a COVID-19 dashboard with daily updates for the latest information.

To stay up to date on vaccine clinics in Otsego County, visit www.bassett.org/covid-19/covid-19-vaccine and www.otsegocounty.com.

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Delaware County Health officials have an update from the week ending 8/5 (updates are once per week), reporting 32 active cases with 2 people hospitalized. The total number of deaths related to coronavirus complications remains at 52. Go to delawarecountypublichealth.com/covid-19/#Dash to access the Delaware County Public Health COVID-19 dashboard.

Delaware County Public Health is conducting a weekly single dose Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) COVID-19 vaccination clinic every Wednesday at the Delhi Farmer's Market, in front of the health department offices at 99 Main St., Delhi from noon to 2:00 pm. This vaccination clinic is open to all New York state residents or people who work in New York State 18 or older. These are all walk-in clinics. Plus, many pharmacies are offering vaccinations, and you can get vaccinated at Delaware Valley Hospital (607-865-2400 ) and through your Bassett Healthcare Network provider.  Find clinic sites at covid19vaccine.health.ny.gov.

In Chenango County, the health department reported on August 3, that at that time, there were 28 active cases in the county with 2 hospitalizations and a total of 77 deaths related to the virus.

The county health dept. has announced that there are clinics coming up with the Pfizer vaccine for anyone 12 and older. Participants MUST REGISTER for clinics by 607-337-1660.
• August 13 Pfizer Vaccine
• August 20 Pfizer Vaccine
• August 27 Pfizer Vaccine

For those who are currently eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine, visit www.co.chenango.ny.us/public-health/nursing/covid19.php to find information on the latest clinics available. Those who wish to receive the vaccine need to register online.

Below is a list of resources for vaccines for those 12 and older:

NYS Am I eligible site: am-i-eligible.covid19vaccine.health.ny.gov
Or call 1-833-NYS-4-VAX (1-833-697-4829)

For UHS Chenango Memorial Hospital you may call 607-337-4888

For BASSETT you may call the information line at 605-547-5555 or visit Bassett.org.

If you think you may have been exposed to COVID-19 CLICK HERE to learn what to do next.

To find a COVID-19 testing site near you visit coronavirus.health.ny.gov/covid-19-testing.

To get information about COVID-19 vaccination distribution, CLICK HERE.

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