‘It certainly still is a pandemic’: COVID-19 cases rise again

Published: Jul. 19, 2022 at 5:15 PM EDT|Updated: Jul. 19, 2022 at 5:33 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - COVID cases continue to fluctuate and some doctors say we’re still in a pandemic.

That’s even though some people don’t like it.

“It certainly still is a pandemic.”

Do you still feel like we’re in a pandemic?

“In a weird way no.”

Frida Gonzalez Rivera lives in Savannah now, but is from Chicago where her relatives still live.

“In the city, we still have a few places that still are only doing takeout and things like that. This down here is way more laxed than it is in Chicago,” Rivera said.

While life for many in our area returns to normal, COVID cases are on the rise again thanks to yet another variant. BA. 5.

“It’s much more, much more contagious.”

COVID cases are up 30 percent in Chatham County according to Coastal Health District Director Dr. Lawton Davis.

He says the community transmission index is around 290. But that number is likely higher because at-home tests aren’t included in that number.

“We may be 1,500 on our old community transmission index. So it has not gone away by any stretch of the imagination,” Coastal Health District Director Dr. Lawton Davis said.

While some people have what doctors call pandemic fatigue, Doctor Tim Connelly at Memorial Health says it’s hard to say when this won’t be considered a pandemic anymore.

“I will say that once the numbers go down and they stay down for a period of time anywhere from six months to a year and it becomes an unusual disease to see then we can definitely have a big sigh of relief to say that it’s unlikely that it’s going to come back but there’s no guarantees that at some point in the future we might see another surge of COVID that’s a completely different strain of what we’ve seen in the last few years,” Internal Medicine Specialist Dr. Tim Connelly said.

Many wonder will the COVID shot become an annual vaccine, Dr. Davis still doesn’t know.

“Whether that turns out to be every four months or every six months or every year, that remains to be unseen.”

About two and a half years later, yet many questions remain.

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