COVID-19 cases remain steady

COVID-19 cases have now dropped below 100 according to County numbers.

Active COVID-19 cases have held steady in the county this week at 181.

The county saw 182 new cases, and 182 recovered from Dec. 20-27.

Eight residents are currently hospitalized.

Time will tell if infections are slowing or if fewer people and testing results held up from the holiday weekend play a role.

This time last year numbers dropped during the holiday week only to rebound.

No new deaths were confirmed this week.

Sixty-nine percent of those with cases were unvaccinated.

Approximately 132 residents got their first vaccine this week and now 61 percent of all residents and 64.7 percent of eligible residents (5+) have received at least one dose.

In the county, 58.2 percent of eligible residents are fully vaccinated and 55 percent of all residents are fully vaccinated, about 4 percent better than the state average.

Currently, the nation is seeing a surge in COVID-19 cases spurred by the Omicron variant.

The variant has yet to be detected in Harvey County, though last week a case was detected in nearby McPherson County.

Early studies from South Africa and the United Kingdom show the Omicron variant to be more contagious but also to result in a lower hospitalization risk than the Delta variant or generic COVID-19.

It was announced at Newton’s Tuesday City Commission meeting that the Health Ministries Clinic was receiving a shipment of approximately 1,500 at-home testing kits for COVID-19 from the federal government to be distributed.

As of Tuesday, Health Ministries had not received the shipment, but planned on holding an event to distribute the kits once it received them.

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