State police: Don’t fall for child safety scam

Indiana State Police is advising families of an active scam related to child safety popping up around the state. Facebook users are warned NOT to provide any personal information to the #ChildSafetyKit Facebook link. It appears to offer a Child Safety Kit by clicking on the link. ISP said some who’ve provided personal information on the link have received phone calls to schedule in-home visits from well-dressed men attempting to sell an “insurance policy” as part of the service. ISP officials say these scammers are trying to gain trust and confidence by falsely claiming to be associated with ISP, and that is a lie.

WCHD offering 600 walk-in COVID shots during 3-day blitz

For the first time, Wayne County Health Department is accepting walk-ins for COVID-19 shots on three days while supplies last, starting the afternoon of Wednesday, March 3. Two hundred doses will be given per day at the former Elder-Beerman store, 601 E. Main St., Richmond. WCHD Executive Director Christine Stinson said the county will have extra doses because of the week of adverse weather and wants to get them into arms as soon as possible. Walk-in hours will be offered from noon to 3 p.m. Wednesday, March 3, through Friday, March 5, for those who meet Indiana State Department of Health’s eligibility criteria to receive a shot. The list of eligible recipients grew on the morning of March 2 to those 55 and older.

COVID vaccines now offered to those 55-plus, or any age with qualifying health issues

Hoosiers 55 and older are now eligible to receive the #COVID19 vaccine. As of March 2, individuals who have been identified by their physician as being part of a special health population also will be able to be scheduled for a vaccine. For the first time, those who have one of the following conditions are eligible to have their provider submit their information:

• Active dialysis patients

Sickle cell disease
Down syndrome
Post-solid organ transplant
People who are actively in treatment (chemotherapy, radiation, surgery) for cancer now or in the last three months, or with active primary lung cancer or active hematologic cancers (lymphoma, leukemia and multiple myeloma)

To make an appointment, their health provider first must submit their patient into the provider portal that was provided by Indiana State Department of Health. The patient then will receive a unique registration link to register for an appointment. The announcement was made shortly before 9 a.m. Tuesday, March 2, just one week after shots were made available to those 60-64.

Sheriff seeks public’s help to find missing Wayne County teen

Wayne County Sheriff’s Department is seeking the public’s help in finding a missing 17-year-old boy. Sheriff Randy Retter said his staff is exploring different avenues to find Kyle Hokey-Jackson, who is originally from the Centerville area. The teen was last seen in the Richmond area early in the afternoon of Jan. 6, and the sheriff’s department was notified of his disappearance on Jan. 7.

Indiana now offering COVID vaccines to ages 65-69

Indiana now has opened vaccinations to those who are 65 or older, or are first responders or health care workers. Volunteer first responders who interact with the public also are eligible. Reid Health operates a regional vaccination center at Kuhlman Center on the Wayne County Fairgrounds that generally has same-day appointments at Kuhlman Center between 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays. As of late last week, about 200 open appointments still were available per day at Kuhlman Center, according to Dr. Thomas Huth of Reid Health. On Tuesday evening, appointments were plentiful on Wednesday and in the coming days at Kuhlman Center.

School leaders, parents glad to see gyms open to fans

Hoosier Hysteria now can begin, as fans of Wayne County high school sports will have a chance to attend games and meets as sectionals approach. Local high school gyms and sports venues are now allowed to fill 25 percent of their seating capacity as long as COVID cases continue decreasing from their recent surge. Those seats will accommodate cheerleaders and spirit bands, who have had to be sidelined during the indoor winter sports season. The increased spectator capacity was announced Friday in a letter signed by the superintendents of the county’s five local public high schools (Centerville, Hagerstown, Lincoln, Northeastern and Richmond). Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb announced earlier in the week that gathering restrictions would be changed to reflect the state’s COVID data trending in the right direction.

Wayne County schools delaying Monday start

Wayne County’s public school districts announced delayed starts for Monday, Feb. 1, because of predicted icy road conditions. Here’s what we have gathered so far from local districts:

Centerville-Abington

Centerville schools will be delayed 90 minutes. Nettle Creek

School will begin at 10 a.m., so everything will be delayed 90 minutes. “We will be monitoring the weather tonight and the roads tomorrow morning to determine if we need to conduct an eLearning Day or not,” Superintendent Kyle Barrentine wrote in a note to families.  “If you do not get another message, we will operate on the delay.

Centerville street faces water boil advisory

Centerville is issuing a boil advisory for all of West Plum Street, effective immediately, because of an emergency repair of a water main. The boil advisory was issued as of 12:25 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 26, and is to continue until further notice. Residents in that area need to boil any water used for cooking, drinking, washing vegetables, etc., for at least 12 minutes at a rolling boil before using. There’s no need to boil water used for bathing or handwashing, the town says in a notice shared on the town’s website.

Appointments can be made starting Friday for Wayne County’s 1,000 vaccine doses

As of Friday, Jan. 8, Wayne County Health Department will start making appointments for 1,000 residents who are 80-plus, first responders or healthcare workers to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in January. Registration begins at 9 a.m. Friday at https://ourshot.in.gov. Anyone who qualifies for the vaccine and is having difficulties going online to schedule can call 211 for assistance. The local health department will have 200 doses available in the first week, with 400 more doses during the week of Jan. 18, and 400 more starting Jan.