Public Health officials discuss COVID safety during Labor Day weekend

Miami Valley News

MIAMI VALLEY, Ohio (WDTN) – Over the last week, Montgomery County reported an average of more than 2,000 cases a day and a positivity rate of more than 14 percent.

Montgomery County and the other 88 counties in the state are designated as having a “High” level of transmission by the CDC.

“The CDC is measuring the amount of spread really related to the number of cases and the number of people. So obviously when there’s a high number of cases that increases your individual chances of contracting COVID because you’re coming into more contact with people who could potentially have COVID,” explained Dan Suffoletto, public information supervisor with Public Health – Dayton & Montgomery County.

As the Labor Day weekend approaches, Suffoletto and other public health leaders across the state and nation are reminding people that getting vaccinated is the best way to feel confident in gathering and traveling for the holiday.

“We know that in Clark County, over the last two weeks combined, 92 percent of our confirmed cases were in people who were unvaccinated. It does make a difference — your vaccine status,” said Charles Patterson, health commissioner of Clark County Combined Health District.

The CDC is urging people who are not vaccinated to stay home for the protection of themselves and others. Even those who are vaccinated should be cautious about gathering because COVID-19 could still spread.

“You could still potentially spread COVID to others if you’re asymptomatic so you want to be mindful of your location and avoid crowds as much as possible,” Suffoletto said.

If you’re unvaccinated and still decide to travel, the CDC recommends getting tested for COVID-19 1 to 3 days before you leave and then getting tested about 3 to 5 days after returning.

Patterson said gathering during the holidays in the past has lead to spikes in cases.

“These are not unchartered waters. Before the July 4 weekend we had single digit cases and we know that since then, the travel and the get-togethers that happened over that weekend we’ve seen cases rise,” he said.

He shared that for the sake of future holidays and gatherings like Thanksgiving and Christmas, exercising caution now could pay off.

“Hopefully, in October we start to see a decline. So that maybe we can get some of this under control prior to the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays,” Patterson said.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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