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Ga.’s public health commissioner makes trip to Savannah to discuss pandemic efforts

Published: Jun. 15, 2021 at 4:23 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Georgia’s Public Health commissioner made her way back to the Hostess City on Tuesday.

She made the trip to look at some of the public health efforts and how they have managed through the pandemic.

It has been months since Dr. Kathleen Toomey was in Savannah. She came to deliver the state’s first shipment of the COVID-19 vaccine, but now she has a different message.

“It’s such an honor for me to be here today. To be able to thank in person, Mayor Johnson for all the work that we have done together. I’ve so appreciated your leadership and he will tell you that when I walked in and saw him today, I said you are the person that has made my job easier because you have on really had such strong leadership here and made such good recommendations,” Dr. Toomey said.

Mayor Johnson and the city made several key moves early in the pandemic. First, they decided to cancel the St. Patrick’s Day parade and festivities, issued emergency declarations and a mask mandate.

These all helped to slow the spread of COVID-19. Dr. Toomey says the Coastal Health District has been her “boots on the ground” to make the pandemic response possible. She says the progress is great, but we aren’t done yet.

“This long year and a half has been extraordinarily difficult one I think for all of us, but as we’re coming out of it I want to remind everyone we’re not through the pandemic yet please don’t, don’t kind of just throw away your mask and say it’s over and just move on. We need to move on, we need to continue to visit businesses, support the economy, but we also must remember that we haven’t gotten through this yet. And please if you have not gotten vaccinated,” Dr. Toomey said.

After meeting the mayor, Dr. Toomey toured the health department, J.C. Lewis, and also got an up-close look at vaccination efforts happening between CORE and the Georgia Ports.

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