Itasca County health Briefing for September 16

As cases of COVID-19 continue to surge, health officials in Itasca County say that the majority of new cases or among those residents not yet vaccinated. The say new infections within the residents who are vaccinated, make up less than one percent (.86 percent) of the total cases since March 2021.

On Thursday, September 16th health officials in the county provided a health briefing to update the public.

Kelly Chandler, Division Manager at Itasca County Public Health stresses the importance of the public getting vaccinated. "Less than one percent of our full vaccinated Itascans have tested positive for COVID," Chandler says. She says of those that have a breakthrough case, there is very low levels of hospitalizations, low ICU stays and Deaths.

"Every little bit will help our health care systems that are overwhelmed," Chandler said Thursday. She says even if a resident questioned the vaccines early on, it is okay to change your mind and get vaccinated now. Clinics and pharmacies are providing vaccinations.

Chandler says the delta variant is being found in Itasca County. "Viruses can’t mutate if they don’t have a host," Chandler said. "It is in all of our best interest to take preventative measures to slow the spread of COVID, including masking regardless of vaccination status, staying six feet apart from others, and staying home when you are sick."

The panel on Thursday includes:

  • Sam Dwyer, inpatient pharmacist, Essentia-Deer River
  • Kayla Scrivner, chief operations officer, Scenic Rivers Health Services
  • Dr. Katy Johnson, OBGYN, Grand Itasca Clinic & Hospital
  • Dr. Dan Soular, family practice physician, Grand Itasca Clinic & Hospital