WILMINGTON — Reported COVID cases for the month of July in Clinton County gave rise to the highest case number since February, according to the county health district’s public nursing director.
In July there were 402 reported local cases, and as of the Board of Health meeting Tuesday morning about three-fourths through August, there had been 299 cases. By comparison, there were 166 reported cases overall in June.
Clinton County Health District Public Nursing Director Monica Wood, RN, said she will soon order the updated coronavirus booster vaccine. It’s aimed at BA.5 and another strain of omicron that, together, presently cause most U.S. cases.
Wood explained that like the yearly flu vaccine, the formula or “recipe” of the COVID vaccine has been changed to be omicron-specific. Both the Pfizer and Moderna brands will offer the new updated COVID vaccine.
Via the Ohio Department of Health, Wood will pre-order / request the vaccine so that hopefully there will be doses already on-hand for when emergency authorization of these shots is issued.
“Our intent [for the initial request] is to order the maximum amount that we can,” she reported to Board of Health members. That falls in the ranges of approximately 600 doses for Pfizer and 200 for Moderna.
As of Wednesday afternoon, it is not known when the shipments will occur, said Wood.
She said it would be nice if the health district could administer the updated COVID booster shots at the drive-through influenza vaccination events already scheduled for this fall.
Plans call for six “drive-thru” style vaccination clinics at a new location. With these events, people can stay in their vehicles and receive their shots.
The location this fall will be in the parking lot by Expo Hall on the Clinton County Fairgrounds. Previously, the drive-thru events were held in the parking lot of the former Southern State Community College campus, but renovation work is ongoing at the facility now owned by the county.
The prior drive-thru events were very well received by the community last year, said Clinton County Health Commissioner Pam Bauer.
The dates are: Wednesday, September 21; Wednesday, September 28; Tuesday, October 4; Wednesday, October 12; Wednesday, October 19; and Tuesday, October 25. The time will be from 1 to 3 p.m. those days. If the weather is bad, the drive-through event will be canceled.
According to state of Ohio statistics as of Aug. 18, Clinton County has had a total 11,431 reported COVID cases, including 172 deaths and 274 local hospitalizations since the onset of the pandemic in March 2020.
Also at this week’s meeting, board members approved a measure to have the health department stop doing designs for septic systems. The health department will stop accepting applications to perform the designing on Friday, Sept. 2.
Anyone needing a septic system designed after that date will need to find a private designer.
Environmental Health Director Matt Johannes said that given where the state is leaning in what it would want from a health department, “we don’t feel that it’s prudent that I train somebody [in the health department] to learn how to do designs.”
Johannes, who presently does the designing at the health department, will be retiring. The application deadline was set so that he will have time to finish designs before he retires.
The health department charges $400 to do home sewage system designs. Reportedly, private designers often charge three times that amount or more.
Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768.