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Health department issues mask advisory for the county as COVID cases climb

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A surge in COVID-19 cases has prompted the Kenton Hardin Health Department to issue a universal mask advisory for Hardin County.

Cindy Keller, health commissioner, said Hardin County continues to meet the CDC definition for high community transmission of COVID-19. The rate per 100,000 continues to climb, from 809.8 on Sept. 9 to 1074.4 as of Sept. 20.

For comparison, one year ago, Hardin County’s rate per 100,000 was 41.4, in May of this year it was just 51.0. 

Keller said the universal mask advisory means everyone over the age of 2 years old who is able is advised to wear a face mask, regardless of vaccination status, when: 

  • In indoor public places 
  • Outdoors in crowded settings 

She said universal masking in schools, businesses, and social settings will slow the spread of COVID-19. 

K-12 schools – Universal masking is advised for all students, staff, teachers and visitors. Parents are asked to urge their children to wear a mask throughout the school day. 

Businesses – Universal masking is recommended for employees as well as patrons. 

Other agencies and organizations – Universal masking is recommended whenever people gather indoors or in outdoor areas where people are close together.  

Keller said Hardin County’s vaccination rate remains low at 34.8% who are vaccinated. Vaccines are safe and effective and remain the best protection against severe illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19, she said.  Too many people remain vulnerable to getting and spreading COVID-19. Vaccination is highly recommended for everyone 12 years old and over. 

“The Delta variant is spreading in our community.  What happens in our community also happens in our schools and businesses,” Keller said. “The Delta variant is the most contagious variant yet.”

Children under 12 years of age are not yet eligible to be vaccinated and are at risk of becoming severely ill from the Delta variant, she said.

“We need children healthy enough to maintain in-person learning and employees healthy enough to maintain our businesses,” Keller said.

No vaccine is 100% effective, she said. Layers of protection offer the best way to slow the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19.

“We know masking is an effective tool to prevent the spread of viruses,” Keller said. “Everyone needs to do their part to protect Hardin County.”

 


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