Fresno County health officials share progress made in pandemic: ‘Vaccine is still our best tool’


FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KGPE) – Fresno County health officials during the County Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday shared the progress the county has made in the last couple of months in regards to the pandemic.

“It was really to remind the board members of where we started back in early year because hospitals were overwhelmed,” Fresno County Department of Public Health Interim Director David Luchini said.

Their presentation to the County Board of Supervisors came exactly three weeks before June 15, when the state is planning on fully reopening its economy.

According to the state, Fresno County’s case rate is at 3.1 new daily cases per 100,000 people and the positivity rate is at 1.9%.

Luchini said during the week of Feb. 2, the positivity rate in the county was at 11.4%.

Per the state, there are 60 positive COVID-19 patients in the county’s hospitals. On Jan. 5, there were 659.

“You’re really starting to see a significant decrease in the number of hospitalizations and death but also the case rates have gone down,” Luchini said.

But still, health officials said there is still much work to be done in the county before and after June 15.

“People are really anxious, they want to get back to normal, we get that. A lot of COVID fatigue, but we’re not done. We still got a lot of work to do and we got to make sure we’re taking care of each other. The vaccine is still our best tool,” Luchini said.

Fresno County Interim Health Officer Dr. Rais Vohra said they’re going to continue to promote health and safety.

“Continuing a data-driven targeted push for testing and vaccines especially in our most vulnerable communities, it goes without saying that that will be a priority,” Vohra said.

The demand for the vaccine in the county continues to remain low. Luchini said around 47% of those who are 12 years old and older in the county have been vaccinated with at least one dose.

Fresno County Department of Public Health Interim Assistant Director Joe Prado said they want that to be at at least 60%.

“Our goal is to keep moving forward, in reaching our overall goal of 1.2 million doses by the end of July,” Prado said.

And health officials said the vaccine is proving to be effective when looking at positivity rates and hospitalizations in the county.

According to the county, around 83% of those who are 65 and older in the county have been vaccinated with at least one dose.

“Which is really significant, in really impacting the positivity rate in Fresno County but also the amount of hospitalizations have significantly gone down,” Prado said.

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July 23 2021 05:30 pm

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