Health departments work to combat rise in COVID cases

Local News

TERRE HAUTE Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – As COVID-19 numbers rise across the country and in the Wabash Valley, some local counties are beginning to see a rise in mass testing and vaccination sites.

This week one of those sites opened at the Vigo County Fairgrounds.

“Right now we are seeing increasing numbers daily here in Vigo County as well as around Indiana and the rest of our country so right now we’re trying to get some control over this COVID-19 situation that the pandemic has handed,” Ashlee Stewart, co-coordinator of the Vigo County Health Department COVID-19 Grant.

With help from the Indiana Department of Health these vaccination clinics are open later to allow residents more flexibility.

Sullivan County will soon open a clinic as well on Friday and Saturday at the Sullivan County Fairgrounds.

“A great opportunity and one more avenue that people if they are on the fence if they need it,” Kelly Wood, RN and public health nurse for the Sullivan County Health Department said. “This is an eight hour period that actually goes into the evening that they can actually go and make the trek and do something for themselves and the community.”

On the first day of the Vigo County drive-thru, over 300 people received a COVID test and over 60 people received a vaccine.

Stewart says over the last couple of months, the Vigo County Health Department has seen a rise in people wanting to be tested but they would like to see that rise in vaccinations as well.

“Out of 100,000 people, we have about 48,000 vaccinated,” Stewart said. “We really, really, really, really, really need to work together. Be in this together and get people vaccinated.”

The Sullivan County Health Department says they just want to do their best to protect their community as much as possible.

“The Delta variant is very, very transmissible and so it’s unlike the cold or flu where maybe you have, can give it to two or three people,” Wood said. “With the Delta variant which is almost 99 percent of the cases, you can give it to eight or nine people.”

The Vigo County COVID-19 vaccine and testing drive-thru will be available from noon until 8p.m. through Wednesday. The Sullivan County location will be open Friday and Saturday from noon to 8p.m. as well. Both will be offering the Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

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