The Valley should expect another COVID surge, hospital officials say

Testing in Waynesboro (WHSV File)
Testing in Waynesboro (WHSV File)(WHSV)
Published: Oct. 20, 2021 at 5:43 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) - Community COVID-19 cases are down, and Augusta Health officials say hospitalizations are down, too.

However, they say the Valley can expect more cases in the future.

“It’s most likely going to become a periodic thing where we’ll see surges again as new variants come out,” said Augusta Health’s Assistant Vice President of Professional Services Scott Crabtree.

Crabtree says as of Wednesday, Oct. 20 at 2 p.m., there were 33 patients hospitalized with COVID-19, and four were on ventilators. He says the census has been steady in the last two weeks, and they expect it to stay around 30 for a while longer.

“I don’t think the current surge that we’re still in is never going to come back again. It’s going to be a recurring theme,” Crabtree said.

That’s because the local vaccination rate sits at just under 60%, according to Crabtree. On top of that, he says the COVID-19 positivity rate is very high, at about 20%.

“That is still very concerning for it to be that high. It was up to 31% about two or three weeks ago, so even though it’s coming down, it’s still very concerning,” he said.

Another way to think about that, Crabtree says, is that one out of every five people who get tested for COVID are positive. Even though things are still tentative, he says they will start resuming normal operations.

“We are going to start doing some elective procedures here soon, and we’re going to be bringing some folks back to their home departments so we can start providing those elective procedures again,” he said.

On top of the pandemic, Crabtree says their regular hospital census is high, so it’s important to keep yourself safe and healthy. To make an appointment to get vaccinated, visit their website.

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