FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – September 28, 2021
In the week since the last press release, Haywood County Public Health has received notice of 318 new cases of COVID-19. As of 5 p.m. on September 27, 2021, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has recorded a total of 6,800 cases in Haywood County since the pandemic began.
According to the CDC, ALL of North Carolina is listed as an area of high community transmission. All surrounding states are also high-transmission areas. Mask-wearing indoors is now highly recommended in such areas. Masks are now required in Haywood County facilities, including the libraries, for employees and the public.
This week 83.3 percent of new COVID cases were unvaccinated. Nearly all of those who require hospitalization are unvaccinated.
Haywood County Health & Human Services are now offering COVID-19 booster shot appointments for those who have completed the primary doses of Pfizer-BioNTech more than 6 months ago and who are in a high-risk category.
At this time, booster shots for Moderna and Johnson & Johnson are not recommended or available.
In addition to its day-to-day health clinic operations, Haywood County Health and Human Services are offering flu shots, 1st and 2nd dose COVID vaccines, and now COVID boosters. Please be patient when scheduling appointments during this exceptionally busy time.
Multiple options for vaccination exist, including community partners like pharmacies and health clinics who are also providing the Pfizer booster.
"We will be relying heavily on our community partners and local pharmacies for the administration of third doses. When COVID vaccines became available in December, many of our local pharmacies we not administering the vaccine. Now the vaccine is readily available at a multitude of locations," said Haywood County Public Health Director Sarah Henderson.
“The majority of positive cases continue to be among the unvaccinated. If you are unvaccinated, I urge you to reconsider. If you are on the fence, please reach out to our staff or your primary care provider for information about the vaccine so that we can address any concerns that you may have. If you are eligible and ready to receive a booster, make your appointment today.”
Walk-in first and second-dose vaccinations are available at the health department and at grocery stores and pharmacies throughout the county.
There is also a mobile vaccine clinic that will travel throughout WNC in October. Find the schedule here: https://publish.smartsheet.com/a0be0d8c32884e46bd578857a20132d9
Vaccination clinic hours are available Monday through Friday during normal business hours at the Haywood County Health Department. Moderna, Pfizer, and Johnson and Johnson vaccines are available now.
For more information on this or other vaccination sites visit: www.vaccines.gov
Citizens who test positive for COVID-19 are encouraged to reach out to friends or family that meet the close contact criteria, and encourage them to self-quarantine and get tested 5-6 days after their exposure to the individual who tested positive. The end goal is to reduce community spread and keep COVID numbers on the downward trend.
Businesses need to be mindful that having quarantined employees return to work too quickly could cause a cluster of cases in the workplace. We ask that employers rely on the honor system and encourage employees who have been exposed to quarantine for the recommended time frame of 14 days from the date of exposure to help reduce potential spread.