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Alabama health officials are optimistic, but say it’s not time to ease

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Montgomery, Alabama (WSFA)-Dr. Scott Harris, Director of Health, Alabama, said on Friday that this could be the most optimistic since the coronavirus pandemic began.

But that doesn’t mean that Alabama should change what they are doing.

“The message is that we’re not out of the woods, but we know how to get out of the woods, so don’t stop doing what you’re doing. Now make it easier to wear your mask It’s not time. It’s not time to join a large group and think everything will work. It’s just a few months away, “Harris said at a press conference on Friday. “Keep thinking about the most vulnerable people.”

Alabama hospitalizations are the lowest since early summer. As of Thursday, 1,003 COVID-19 inpatients were being treated throughout the state.

State health officials have also been encouraged by the recent 9.4% positive rate, the lowest since October. Over the last few days, the number of new cases every day has also fallen below 1,000.

“This was probably the most optimistic we’ve ever had since it all started. As you know, 1,000 people in the hospital are many sick people. I’m not too optimistic about it. I don’t want to, but at the same time, we’re looking at the path forward and we know how to get there now, and it seems to be working, “Harris said.

The latest figures from the Alabama Public Health Service show that Alabama has given 685,870 COVID-19 vaccines.

Harris says he received more than 58,000 COVID-19 vaccinations last week. The state expects to receive more than 90,000 vaccinations a week from February 21st to 27th.

Harris says vaccination may play a role in the current number of cases, but there is also innate immunity from people infected with the virus.

“We hope the trajectory is down. We hope the disease will heal spontaneously, but we don’t know at this point,” Harris added.

Currently, the state is still in Phase 1B of vaccination. Harris said it would not expand to the next stage until high demand was no longer seen among the current eligible population. He added that there are currently almost no doses sufficient to cover eligible people.

While COVID-19 vaccine administration and vaccination have been delayed across regions across the country, ADPH states that there was no vaccine loss in Alabama due to bad weather. Harris added on Friday that delays in vaccine distribution would be minimal.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has also updated its recommendations for residents who need to receive a second dose. According to the CDC, if the second dose delays the normal distribution schedule, those doses may be given up to 42 days after the first dose.

Alabama may begin vaccination with Johnson & Johnson in early March, but Harris said no details were given.

To date, the state has reported 485,212 viruses and 847 new cases reported on Friday.

Copyright 2021 WSFA 12 News. all rights reserved.

Original: https://www.wsfa.com/2021/02/19/live-state-health-officials-give-update-vaccine-distribution-efforts/

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