Saline County Health Officer, along with Saline County medical experts, urge residents to remain vigilant in our community battle against COVID-19, as positive cases are rising in Saline County and the Delta variant has been detected.
This vigilance is highly important with the upcoming 4th of July weekend.
Constant transmission is what allows the opportunity for mutation. The longer a virus circulates among a population, the more likely it is to mutate and overcome current medical interventions. Prevention of variant strains of the virus is of the utmost importance.
The best way to stop the spread of COVID-19 and thus prevent mutation of the virus is:
●Stay home if you are sick.
●Get tested if you feel unwell, even if you don’t believe it is COVID. You can find testing centers at gogettested.com.
●Get vaccinated. You can find a vaccine at vaccines.gov.
●Wear a mask, especially if you are not fully vaccinated.
●Maintain at least six feet of distance between yourself and those with whom you do not live.
●Do not travel to “hot spots."
Currently, at least 13 people in Saline County have tested positive for a variant of the virus. The Delta variant is quickly becoming the dominant strain in Kansas and the surrounding states, specifically Missouri, Iowa, and Nebraska. This variant is substantially more transmissible, up to 60 percent more than the previous U.K. (Alpha) variant, and more dangerous.
Vaccines provide a significant level of protection against variants. Research has shown vaccinated persons are less likely to contract the virus and less likely to require hospitalization if they do.
Effective today, Saline County will send all positive COVID-19 PCR samples to be tested for variants. Previously, once a sample tested positive, an investigation would determine whether or not the sample warranted further testing. Unusual circumstances, like the person having had the virus previously, being fully vaccinated, or seeing multiple cases in a short amount of time, would warrant further testing if possible.
There have been 38 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the last week, with one sample testing positive for the Delta variant and others presumed to be the Delta variant.
At least 20,972 people have been vaccinated in Saline County. We are aware of a reporting issue with federal providers like CVS, the VA, and others who are not reporting their vaccination numbers at the state level. We are awaiting a fix on the federal level.