January 18, 2022

Coronavirus briefs 9/28

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Cayuga Health: Vaccine mandate no impediment

As healthcare facilities around New York came up on the deadline to have their workers vaccinated against COVID-19, Cayuga Health’s CEO said the mandate will not seriously effect its operations.

“I respect that the decision to get vaccinated is personal, but as a health system I want to recognize that we do recommend vaccination as the first line of defense against COVID-19 for most individuals,” said Dr. Martin Stallone, president and CEO of the health organization.

“It is not easy to see employees leave our organization due to this mandate, we hope that those who have chosen to remain unvaccinated will rejoin our organization when this pandemic is over or if they change their mind,” he added.

Still, healthcare providers must be strategic in staffing decisions, a Cornell University expert said.

“One of the unique challenges of the potential staffing shortages associated with the vaccine mandate is the lack of predictability as to where these shortages will occur,” said Ariel Avgar, an associate professor in the School of Industrial and Labor Relations and associate director with the Scheinman Institute on Conflict Resolution. “Resistance to vaccination likely cuts across different healthcare occupations making it difficult for hospitals, nursing homes, and other healthcare organizations to properly plan and adapt.”

Guthrie, which operates Guthrie Cortland Medical Center, reported Sept. 16 that 81% of its employees were vaccinated, and more were getting the shots.

Cortland adds 66 cases, 1 death

Cortland County reported 66 new cases of COVID-19 over the weekend, and one new death, bringing the total number of cases to 5,744.

Tompkins and Cayuga counties reported 68 new cases Sunday, and three new deaths. The number of people who have contracted the virus increased to 19,849 across Cortland, Tompkins and Cayuga counties since the pandemic began in March 2020. The number of people who have died from the virus has risen to 237.

• The Cortland County Health Department was monitoring 438 patients, 153 of them confirmed positive. Eight were hospitalized. Since the pandemic began, 288 people have been hospitalized. The Cortland County Health Department has received 147,118 negative test results. The county has reported 74 deaths. The latest death was of a nursing home patient at Guthrie Cortland Medical Center’s nursing facility, bringing to eight the number of deaths there. Cortland Park Nursing and Rehabilitation Center has reported 22 deaths, Crown Park Rehabilitation and Nursing Center has reported 15.

• Tompkins County reported 47 new cases Sunday, reports the state Health Department. The number of confirmed cases rose to 6,071. A total of 2,537,391 tests have been administered. Fifty-nine Tompkins residents have died.

• In Cayuga County, the state Health Department reported 21 new cases Sunday, and three new deaths. Confirmed cases rose to 8,034. The state reports 238,381 tests have been administered. The state reports 104 people have died.

144,312 get shots in 3 counties

The state Health Department reported Sunday that 25,993 Cortland County residents have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, or 54.4% of the county’s total population and 63.2% of its people over 18. A total of 50.7% of the county has been fully vaccinated.

In Tompkins County, 74,887 people have received at least one dose, or 72.9% of the population and 80.6% of people over 18; 68% are fully vaccinated. In Cayuga County, 43,432 residents have received at least one dose, or 56.3% of the total population and 65.7% of people over 18; 51.9% are fully vaccinated.

Statewide, 13.75 million people have received at least one dose, or 70.7% of the state’s population and 83.5% of its people over 18; 63.2% of the total population is fully vaccinated, as is 74.9% of its people over 18.

Cortland rate: 313 cases per 100K

Cortland County reported 135 new cases of coronavirus from Sept. 20 to Sunday. The national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Cortland has 313.15 new cases per 100,000 people over the past week.

The county was listed as having a “high risk” of transmission. Cayuga, Onondaga, Chenango, Broome, Madison and Tioga counties also have been listed as “high risk,” with transmission rates above 100 cases per 100,000 over the past week.

The CDC recommends indoor masking in counties that exceed 50 cases per 100,000 over seven days.

The rates and risk, from the CDC:
Cortland: 313.15 — high
Tompkins: 179.10 — high
Cayuga: 301.66 — high
Onondaga: 284.24 — high
Broome: 323.38 — high
Chenango: 313.15 — high
Tioga: 257.25 — high
Madison: 242.46 — high

Cayuga vaccine clinic Saturday

The Cayuga County Health Department will be conduct a COVID-19 vaccination clinic 10 a.m. to noon Saturday at the Fingerlakes Mall in Auburn.

Registration is required and appointments can be made at www.cayugacounty.us/health.

Both first and second doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines will be available. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is also available.

Children 12 years of age and older are eligible for the Pfizer vaccine and a parent or guardian must accompany anyone under 18.