Coronavirus (COVID-19) Five Hundred Fifty-Fourth Update

Monday, September 13, 2021
Dear Guilderland residents:

In an update today, Albany County Executive Daniel P. McCoy reported that there were 64 new positive cases yesterday and that the County’s COVID-19 pandemic total was 27,460.  The County’s five-day average of new positive cases increased from 76.4 to 79.6 cases.  Of today’s new cases, 19 persons reported close contact with a positive case, 39 persons reported no known source of infection, one person reported out-of-state travel, and five persons either resided or worked in a congregate setting.  There are 454 active cases, a decrease of 14 since yesterday.  There are now 762 persons in quarantine, a decrease of 15.  So far, 86,693 people have completed quarantine of which 27,006 had tested positive and recovered.  
The County reported that there were three COVID-19 hospitalizations overnight and that there are now 36 hospitalized County residents, an increase of one.  There are now eight ICU patients, an increase of one.  The County reported the death of a man in his 80’s which raised the County’s COVID-19 cumulative death toll to 399.  The County Executive added:
It saddens me to have to report yet another county resident losing their battle with COVID, tragically bringing our total to just shy of 400 deaths since the pandemic started.  This comes as the CDC releases a new study showing that unvaccinated individuals were 10 times more likely to be sent to the hospital and 11 times more likely to die after getting infected with the virus than those who have been vaccinated.  If you don’t get the shot, you are not protected from COVID, and you’re at an even higher risk of spreading it to your family and friends.  Please do your part and roll up your sleeve for the greater good of our community.
State DOH reported that 70.4% of the County’s total population and 81.4% of the adult population has received at least one vaccine dose.  The State’s one-dose vaccination rate using CDC data is 69.1% of the total population and 81.6% of adults. 
State DOH’s COVID-19 dashboard reported 109,138 statewide test results that were 3,686 or 3.4% positive, with the seven-day average remaining at 3.2% and the 14-day average decreasing to 3.2%.  The Capital Region’s reported results for 4,591 tests were 238 or 5.2% positive, with the seven-day average increasing to 4.4% and the 14-day average remaining at 4.5%.  Albany County’s reported results for 1,061 tests were 64 or 6.0% positive, with the seven-day average increasing to 4.5% and the 14-day average remaining at 4.5%. 
In her COVID-19 update today, Governor Hochul reported that yesterday’s State-wide test results had a positive rate of 3.38%.  The State’s data included hospitalizations (2,391, +24), new admissions (257), ICU patients (544, +25), intubated patients (282, +15), and 29 deaths.  
Dr. Anthony Fauci, an infectious disease expert, stated today that he would support requiring vaccinations for commercial air travelers.  While no US-based airline has yet announced a vaccination mandate for passengers, the Australian airline Qantas confirmed that unvaccinated passengers would be barred from international flights. 
As the Town EMS awaits the hopeful arrival of boosters this fall, a new study today by a group of FDA experts stated that boosters might be appropriate for immunocompromised people, but that boosters are not yet needed for protecting the general public.  The study conflicts with the Biden Administration’s announcement that boosters for the general public should be available for persons eight months after receipt of the full vaccination around September 20.  The new study confirmed that the efficacy of the approved vaccines against the Delta variant appear to wane slightly over time, but that the vaccines remain effective against severe illness in all age groups, and that only adults over 75 years have a weakened protection against hospitalization.  Innumerable studies show that the vaccines remain incredibly protective against severe illness, hospitalization, or death from COVID-19.  The FDA’s advisory team is scheduled to meet on Friday to review the data and make recommendations on next steps for booster shots.  
Thank you for staying safe and calm.
Peter G. Barber        
Town Supervisor