• 55°

Crisp, Dooly counties on COVID red alert; Wilcox remains on yellow

By Sharon McGahee

Dispatch Correspondent

Crisp and Dooly counties have been placed on the COVID-19 red alert while Wilcox County remains on yellow according to data released by the Georgia Dept. of Public Health West Central District

The rating is based on the percentage of positive tests from December 8 to December 22. Crisp jumped from 9 percent to 13.8 percent positive results while Dooly recorded 13.1 percent for the same period.  Wilcox remained steady with 6.6 percent.

Crisp totaled 904 cases for the year including 101 new cases and 27 deaths. Dooly recorded 46 cases for a yearly total of 470 cases and 20 deaths. Wilcox reported 335 cases this year with 27 new cases and 25 deaths.

The Georgia Department of Public Health (GDPH) West Central District’s Georgia Immunization Program (GIP) will place providers into tiers that align with priority population vaccine allocation plans developed using federal frameworks as a guide. GIP will send providers agreement for each facility or entity to complete and submit back to GIP creating a phased tier approach, beginning with Tier 1a and Tier 1b The enrollment process has been moved from a paper based format to an online format in the Georgia Registry of Immunization Transactions and Services (GRITS).
Providers must complete training for shipping, handling and storage of the COVID-19 vaccine along with GRITS training and administration of the vaccine process. Links to online training will be provided.

Phase 1A groups, those identified as being at the highest risk for contracting coronavirus, are first. Healthcare workers who have potential for direct or indirect exposure to patients or infectious materials and are unable to work from home, including but not limited to clinical staff, nurses, physicians, first responders, Emergency Medical Service (EMS) workers and staff, public and private laboratory specimen collectors and adults age 60 or older with at least two comorbidities that put them at a significantly higher risk.

Phase 1A residents who need to receive a vaccine at a local health department should complete a survey at the Georgia Department of Public Health (GDPH) West Central District web site.

Phase 1B includes other essential workers and people at higher risk of severe illness such as police and fire personnel not covered under Phase 1A

Critical workforce employees (pharmacy staff, educational faculty and s court employees, food processors, grocery store workers, transportation staff, nuclear power plant employees and air traffic controllers, etc.

Phase 1C includes people at a higher risk of severe COVID-19 illness that were not vaccinated during Phases 1A or 1B, adults 65 and older and their caregivers, adults below age 65 with comorbidities, the general population and people in need of additional doses to complete vaccination series.