Monday, April 12, 2021
April 12, 2021

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Clark County COVID-19 cases jump, prompting warning to exercise caution

Public Health reports 74 cases on Friday, the biggest one-day total since late January

By , Columbian Metro Editor
Published:

Several weeks of gradual increases in COVID-19 activity have been punctuated by a sudden jump in cases and a warning by Clark County Public Health to exercise caution during Easter weekend and the upcoming school spring break.

“As we approach the Easter holiday and spring break, please take precautions to keep yourself, your loved ones and our community healthy,” Public Health said in a statement on social media. “Now is not the time to relax preventive measures.

The warning came as Clark County reported 74 new cases Friday, more than double the case counts for much of this week and the highest single-day total since Jan. 29, according to Public Health data. The new cases push the total to date to 19,521 and the weekly total to 317 cases, an average of about 45 cases a day.

The weekly average was the highest since the week ending Feb. 12 as cases were tapering off from a peak in early January of about 180 cases a day. Cases had fallen to as low as about 29 cases a day in early March before rising to about 34 cases a day for two weeks and about 37 cases a day last week.

“The increasing virus activity should be a reminder to all of us that the pandemic is not over,” Dr. Alan Melnick, health officer for Clark and Cowlitz counties, said in a media release Friday. “It’s been a long year and we’re all experiencing pandemic fatigue, but we need to have a little more patience.”

Several weeks of gradual increases in COVID-19 activity has been punctuated by a sudden jump in cases and a warning by Clark County Public Health to exercise caution during the upcoming spring break.

“As we approach the Easter holiday and spring break, please take precautions to keep yourself, your loved ones and our community healthy,” Public Health said in a statement on social media. “Now is not the time to relax preventive measures.

No new deaths were reported Friday, leaving deaths from COVID-19 in Clark County at 242. Only one death has been reported since March 26.

There were 288 active cases still in their isolation period as of Friday, up from 269 on Thursday, according to Public Health data.

Hospitalizations increased slightly, with 20 people hospitalized with COVID-19 on Friday, up from 17 on Thursday, and five people hospitalized awaiting test results, up from four on Thursday, according to Public Health data.

Public Health specifically urged people to stay close to home this spring break and to take the following steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19:

  • Avoid large gatherings.
  • Gather outdoors, if possible, and stay at least 6 feet from people you don’t live with.
  • If you’re gathering indoors, keep the group small (no more than 10 people you don’t live with), wear face coverings and open doors and windows to increase air flow.

Public Health said people who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 should continue to take precautions, such as wearing face coverings and maintaining physical distancing, when in public and gathering with others.

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