Carroll County Health Nurse Joyce Yoder reports that approximately 27% of the residents of Carroll County have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19. According to the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH), that number on Tuesday was 5,485 individuals.

Yoder attributes the reason that some residents are reluctant to get the vaccine to Carroll County is a small, rural county so some individuals do not feel the need to be vaccinated as the number of positive cases is not that high here and to religious beliefs.

There are many benefits to being fully vaccinated, she explained. But the main reason is not to have to wear a mask. She did recommend wearing a mask in places where there are a lot of people, just for protection.

Carroll County has been following the national trend in the number of people currently being vaccinated. “It is way down from the spring,” she said.

The county’s vaccination clinic at the courthouse is now closed but vaccinations, both Pfizer and Moderna (both two-shot), are available at the Carroll County Health Dept. from 1 to 4 p.m. on Tuesdays and from 9 to 11 a.m. on Wednesdays. Appointments are preferred by calling (765) 564-3420, but walk-ins are accepted. The health department is located at the county courthouse in Delphi.

Youth ages 12 and older can receive a COVID-19 vaccine; individuals younger than age 18 are eligible for the Pfizer vaccine only.

As of Tuesday, a total of 5,840,826 doses have been administered in Indiana. This includes 2,910,108 first doses and 2,930,718 individuals who are fully vaccinated. The fully vaccinated number represents individuals who have received a second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines and those who received the single Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Yoder said she has been working with both school corporations as they develop return to school guidelines for the 2021-22 school year. Both corporations want to return “as normally as possible” and continue to discuss the current Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC) guidelines, as well as guidelines issued by the ISDH and local health department as they finalize their plans.

She said the CDC has said students must wear a mask on public transportation, including school buses, even if they are fully vaccinated. Students who are not vaccinated, it is recommended they wear a mask inside the school building except when eating, however the school corporations may make mask wearing optional for their students and staff.

Schools will continue to have to contact trace and initiate quarantine periods when a positive case of COVID-19 is confirmed, Yoder said.

According to Yoder, those students who are fully vaccinated will not have to quarantine, even if they are exposed to the virus, and should be able to continue participating in extra-curricular activities.

Currently, Carroll County has seen an uptick in positive cases of COVID-19. As of Tuesday, there have been 33 new cases in July with eight just this past Sunday, Yoder said.

“Carroll County has had no cases of the Delta variant, that I know of,” Yoder said. However, there have been seven cases of the Alpha (United Kingdom) variant and one case of the Brazilian variant. Two break-through (already vaccinated) cases have been reported as well.

Yoder said she learns of the variant and break-through cases for Carroll County from the ISDH.

Yoder believes Carroll County has more cases of COVID-19 than are being reported.

“People just aren’t testing,” she said. “They say they had the symptoms and suspect they had it, but just did not bother getting tested.”

“If people think they have COVID-19, it is still important to quarantine,” she said. “Don’t be out spreading it to unsuspecting people.”

To find other vaccination sites, visit ourshot.in.gov or call 211 if you do not have access to a computer or require assistance.

CDC update

On Tuesday, the CDC issued updated guidelines for fully vaccinated people to wear masks indoors in parts of the country where COVID-19 is surging. The CDC also recommended indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to schools, regardless of vaccination status.
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