Wayne County beats its 1-day record for new COVID cases; nearly half are kids

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A vehicle turns into the parking lot for Wayne County Health Department's COVID-19 testing site, which has returned to the former Elder-Beerman store because of increased demand. Appointments are required for testing. Photo by Millicent Martin Emery

Wayne County has surpassed more than 100 new COVID cases in the daily count announced Thursday, Aug. 26, with nearly half of those illnesses in children.

The county broke its one-day record for new cases, which has been in place since Nov. 19, 2020. The previous record was 103, and now the county has an additional 105 reported cases.

Of the 105 new cases, 42 were in children.

As of Friday, Aug. 27, all of Wayne County’s public school districts will require masks to be worn indoors regardless of vaccination status, with Western Wayne Schools joining the others that day to implement a mandate for the time being.

In another milestone announced Thursday, Wayne County exceeded 8,000 lab-confirmed positive cases of COVID since the pandemic began. The county now stands at 8,059 cases.

Also on Thursday, Wayne County reported its fourth COVID-related death so far in August.  The latest death is a female in her 70s who was unvaccinated.  No further information will be provided at this time.

Wayne County remained in the orange advisory level with a score of 2.5 out of 3 for the number of new cases and its positivity rate.

Wednesday’s new data puts Wayne County as close as it can be without entering the worst level (red), which is where Union County currently stands for its level of community spread. Seventeen counties, including Union, are in the red level.

Only a handful of counties are yellow, or at a lower level. They are all in northwest or west central Indiana.

“This is a stark reminder for all of us that this pandemic is not over,” said Wayne County Health Department Executive Director Christine Stinson. “We are seeing case numbers at the height of the fall surge. There is not a mask mandate, but that does not mean you should not be wearing a mask when you are indoors in public spaces. Wearing a mask and getting vaccinated are our best tools in slowing the spread of COVID-19.”

Wayne County Health Department’s COVID vaccination clinic is open from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. weekdays, and is open to anyone 12 and older.

Appointments can be made by visiting www.ourshot.in.gov. Walk-ins are accepted until 3:30 p.m.

WCHD recently moved its COVID testing site back to the former Elder-Beerman store at 601 E. Main St., in Richmond to accommodate increased demand. Appointments are required for testing, and may be made by visiting scheduling.coronavirus.in.gov. The testing site is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays.

Hoosiers can go to any location in their county or in nearby counties for testing or vaccinations that’s convenient for them.

Henry Community Health is continuing to operate the state’s drive-thru testing site across from its hospital at 1007 N. 16th St., New Castle. Hours are 9 a.m.-5 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays. Tests are free. Patients needing COVID-19 testing should go to ourshot.in.gov to schedule their test.
HCH also offers vaccinations at Immediate Care at New Castle Family & Internal Medicine Northfield Park, 152 Wittenbraker Ave., New Castle. Hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. Patients may walk in or call  765- 599-2754. The vaccine clinic is no longer open at the hospital.

 

Reid Health announced Wednesday that it is pausing vaccines at its urgent and ready care sites in Richmond and Connersville because of many patients needing to be seen for illness, but shots are available Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at Kuhlman Center, 861 Salisbury Road N. They also are available at many area pharmacies.

Stinson urges those who haven’t been vaccinated to get a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as they can, and those who aren’t fully vaccinated, to keep practicing healthy habits to slow the spread.

She recommends masks that cover the mouth and nose, staying at least 6 feet away from others, avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces, and washing hands often.  Those who feel ill should stay home and isolate.

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