Huntsville Hospital and city leaders gave an update this afternoon on the COVID-19 status in Madison County, including information about the most recent vaccine boosters. Read on for all the info you need.
COVID cases on the rise
Though COVID numbers are nowhere near the highs they reached last winter, they have been trickling up since the beginning of summer (according to the New York Times). Here are the most recent numbers for Alabama as of Thursday morning, Sept. 1:
- 1,494,300 total cases
- 19.4% test positivity in previous seven days
- 8,081 positive tests in previous seven days
Here’s what those numbers look like in Madison County:
- 105,215 total cases
- 21% test positivity in previous seven days
- 667 positive tests in previous seven days
These numbers were all sourced from the Alabama Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 Dashboard, which updates every Thursday morning at 10AM.
New boosters available soon
Last Thursday, the CDC authorized an updated booster to the COVID-19 MRNA vaccines that should be more effective against the currently circulating subvariants, Omicron BA.4 and BA.5.
Dr. Wes Stubblefield, the district medical officer for the Alabama Department of Public Health, said that many local pharmacies and vaccine providers were able to place preorders for the new boosters after it was approved last week. Though it is impossible to know exactly when any given provider will have the new vaccine, Stubblefield said many spots should receive their orders as soon as this week.
Supply may be limited in the beginning, but Stubblefield said that it will quickly ramp up over time.
“For the first time, we’ve actually got a vaccine that matches the circulating virus. The virus has been mutating so rapidly that it was difficult to catch up, so we’re excited that this vaccine is actually matched up with the Omicron subvariant BA.4 and BA.5.”Dr. Robert Chappell, Huntsville Hospital Chief Medical Officer
Make sure you’re up-to-date on your COVID vaccines and boosters on the CDC website.
Vaccines now available
There are currently four COVID-19 vaccines authorized for use in the U.S., and it’s not too late to get your first shot if you haven’t been vaccinated yet. The four vaccines are:
- Johnson + Johnson
Dr. Robert Chappell, Chief Medical Officer at Huntsville Hospital, emphasized the importance of getting vaccinated, reminding listeners that “COVID is still a significant health event.”
Vaccines for the upcoming flu season are now available, too. Stubblefield said there’s no issue with receiving the flu vaccine at the same time as a COVID booster.
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