By Stefanie Jackson – Accomack schools Coordinator of Student Health Services Tonya Martin had “excellent news” for the school board Tuesday night on the state of the COVID-19 pandemic in the county.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s school metrics published on the Virginia Department of Health website Feb. 16, the number of new COVID-19 cases in Accomack per 100,000 persons in a 14- day period was 429.
That means within the previous two weeks, there were about 142 new cases of COVID-19 in Accomack, since the county’s population is not 100,000 but approximately 33,000.
The number of new cases had declined over the past 35 days.
The percentage of positive COVID-19 tests was nearly 15%, down from 20% a month earlier.
Accomack County reported four new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, and a seven-day average of nine new cases per day.
Martin announced that Accomack teachers and school staff who registered for the COVID-19 vaccine would receive their second doses on Friday.
The event was coordinated by Accomack County Public Schools, Riverside Medical Group, and the local health department, and it was open to Accomack and Northampton public and private school teachers and staff by appointment.
Martin also shared new CDC guidelines for persons who have received the COVID-19 vaccine and have been exposed to COVID-19.
A person who has been potentially exposed to COVID-19 does not need to quarantine for 14 days if the exposure occurred at least two weeks after the person received the final dose of the vaccine, the exposure occurred within three months of vaccination, and the person has no symptoms of COVID-19.
A person should not skip quarantine unless he or she meets all three criteria listed. Persons who avoid quarantine should still self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms for two weeks and consult a clinician if symptoms appear, Martin said.
As of Feb. 16, the total number of Accomack school students or staff who were COVID-19-positive were 10: one teacher, one staff member, four hybrid students, and four virtual students.