VIGO COUNTY, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) —Local health officials are urging people to continue to be cautious as COVID-19 cases spike in Indiana.

Indiana Department of Health advisory map as of 1-13-22

As of Thursday, the latest county metrics map from the state Department of Health shows most of the area to be at the “red” level. That includes Vigo, Sullivan, Knox, Greene, Daviess, Martin, Clay, Owen, Parke, and Vermillion county.

The “red” advisory is the highest level when it comes to COVID-19 transmission.

According to Andrea Craft, a registered nurse with the Vigo County Health Department, much of what has been seen is the result of the more contagious Omicron variant. She says residents getting together for the holidays and a general lack of masking in the area were contributing factors in the surge.

Craft says residents need to be mindful that COVID-19 is still out there, so wash those hands, wear that mask, and keep your distance as you go about your day.

Spotlight on Vigo County

According to the state’s COVID-19 dashboard, the 7-day ‘all tests positivity rate’ sits at 24.6%. That is just shy of 10% higher than the benchmark to trigger into the red advisory level. Looking at Sunday, Jan. 9 (with 205 tests reportedly administered) the county saw a positivity rate of 45%. That accounts for the highest percentage since March of 2020, however that number is a bit misleading, as on that day only 2 tests were administered with one returning positive for a 50% positivity rate.

Looking at the ‘weekly cases per 100,000 residents’ metric, the county also triggered the highest level with 1,633 cases reported. Between Jan. 4-Jan.10 each day reported more than 200 cases with the highest number reported falling on Saturday, Jan. 8, when there were 348 positive cases.

Upcoming Vaccine Clinics

To help combat the rising tide of Omicron the department will hold a special question and answer session about vaccines next week.

“The little Q&A sessions, it’s more personal. People don’t really want to call in, I understand that they want a person-to-person contact to kind of get through some of the misinformation that they are hearing.” said Craft.

“And there is so much information about vaccines, and different types, which one should I choose? and the Q and A sessions really help disseminate that kind of information.” Craft added that residents seemed to respond much better to that direct communication method.

The question and answer session will take place immediately before a COVID-19 Vaccination clinic in which residents aged 12 and older will be able to get the Pfizer vaccine or booster while those 18-years-old and up can choose to get the Moderna vaccine or booster.

The clinic is free and open to the public and will be held Wednesday, Jan. 19 at the Second Missionary Baptist Church, located at 1400 Oak Street. The Q and A session will begin at 6:30 p.m. and vaccinations will be administered from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

For questions regarding the clinic or COVID-19 vaccinations and precautions, contact the Vigo County Health Department at (812) 462-3428.