WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio (WDTN) – The Wright-Patterson AFB held a town hall Wednesday to provide an update on the coronavirus.
The 88th Air Base Wing and Installation Commander Col. Patrick Miller said during the Facebook Live Coronavirus Situation Update Town Hall at 4:30 p.m. that the base is considering moving to Health Protection Condition (HPCON) Delta.
From November through December, there was a 400 COVID-19 case increase on base.
“Never in a million years did we expect to see that increase, and that increase was due to the new omicron variant, a variant that seems to be more transmissible,” Miller said.
In order for the base to move to HPCON Delta, Miller said the base looks at the following four factors on base and in surrounding counties:
- Case incidence rate
- Trajectory of new cases
- Percent positivity rate
- Hospital capacity
“The numbers say we should be in this now, but the practical side of where we’re at on the installation is giving me some pause,” Miller said.
Miller said while numbers are heading in the wrong direction, there is hesitation to make the the switch because what is happening on the base compared to in the community. He said 97% of active duty military members on base are vaccinated and so are 91% of civilians who work on base.
The base also has COVID-19 measures like masking, social distancing and COVID-19 screening in place.
“We’re doing those things necessary to protect the mission sets for those folks that are coming here on the installation to work and serve each and every day,” Miller said.
Miller said the decision will be made in the next few days. In September 2021, WPAFB transitioned to HPCON Charlie to combat the growing number of COVID-19 cases in the region.
Watch the full townhall live stream below.