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Central Shenandoah Health District anticipates surge in COVID-19 cases into summer

Published: May. 24, 2022 at 11:49 PM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - The Central Shenandoah Health District (CSHD) is preparing for COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations to surge in the coming weeks.

As of May 19, Staunton, Augusta County, and Waynesboro are all experiencing high community levels according to the CDC. The COVID-19 Community Level is determined by the higher of the new admissions and inpatient beds metrics, based on the current level of new cases per 100,000 population in the past seven days.

“If you are in an area that has a high COVID-19 community level then it’s recommended that you do wear a mask indoors,” Laura Lee Wight, with the CSHD, said. “You definitely want to make sure you’re up to date on your booster shots or get your COVID-19 vaccine if you haven’t already, and you want to make sure you have a plan to get tested.”

Rockingham County, Harrisonburg, Page County, and Shenandoah County have low community levels as of May 19.

“People may be masking less than they were in the wintertime or fall,” Wight said. “In addition, people are gathering in large groups now. We’ve had some spring holidays and large social gatherings, like graduations and weddings.”

Due to community levels, Augusta Health updated its COVID-19 visitor restrictions policy, effective May 23. All non-COVID patients admitted to Augusta Health are permitted to have one visitor at a time from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., with the exception of patients admitted to Crossroads.

Augusta Health has established limited exceptions for certain patient populations and circumstances.

If you have any COVID-19 questions, you can call the CSHD COVID hotline. Public health staff will be available to assist with COVID-19 questions and concerns Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Call 1-855-949-8378 to be connected.

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