Active COVID cases surpass last year’s totals


By Jessie Wagoner


The McPherson County Health Department released some grim information this week. The number of people with active COVID-19 in the month of August exceeded the numbers of active cases at the same time last year. This data and the current increasing trend of active cases does not lead experts to believe COVID cases will subside anytime soon. 

“During the month of August 2021, 307 new cases of COVID-19 were diagnosed and reported, 17 of which were hospitalized,” Shalei Shea, director of the McPherson County Health Department, said. “The hospitalizations range in age from 20 years old to 90 years old, and length of stay ranges from two days to 19 days and counting. In comparison, during the month of August 2020, only 61 new cases of COVID-19 were diagnosed and reported. 

As of press time, the county is reporting 124 active cases with eight current hospitalizations. In the last week, three additional deaths due to COVID-19 have occurred. This makes 89 total deaths for McPherson County.

“McPherson County Health Department (MCHD) recommends all individuals 2 years old and above mask in indoor settings when six-foot distance cannot be maintained while community transmission is high,” Shea said. “Vaccination continues to be the number one public health prevention strategy. Get vaccinated if you’re eligible, stay home if you are sick, and wash your hands.”

Currently, McPherson County has a 44.9 percent vaccination rate. Vaccinations are available through your primary care provider and the McPherson County Health Department.