Staff Report —
COVID-19 cases have increased dramatically over the last two weeks on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. Per the Eastern Shore Health District as of Dec. 23, 2021, the Shore was experiencing an average of 10 new cases each day. As of Jan. 10, the seven-day average was more than 100 new cases each day. Yesterday (Jan. 10) saw 143 new cases reported on the Eastern Shore. Since Jan. 1, there have been 18 new hospitalizations of Shore residents and one death from COVID-19.
The Eastern Shore Health District, Eastern Shore Rural Health System Inc., and Riverside Shore Memorial Hospital continue to coordinate efforts to combat COVID-19. “As COVID cases rise we are adjusting provider schedules to free up as much time as possible to tend to people who are sick with COVID symptoms and other seasonal illnesses,” said Matt Clay, CEO of Rural Health, in a joint press release issued by the three health care entities.
Testing availability is an issue. “We continue to add as many opportunities as we can for testing, but supply is limited and cannot meet the current testing demand. The best method to prevent further spread is to stay home when feeling ill,” said Jon Richardson, COO for the Eastern Shore Health District.
Getting vaccinated is an important step to protect yourself from COVID-19. “A majority of our hospitalized COVID patients continue to be unvaccinated; emphasizing the success vaccination and boosters offer to effectively prevent severe illness and hospitalization. If you have not already done so, we encourage you to become fully vaccinated, including a booster, to protect yourself, your loved ones and the Shore community,” said Nick Chuquín, President of Riverside Shore Memorial Hospital, in the press release.
All eligible Shore residents are urged to get vaccinated or boosted against COVID-19. Additionally, please wear a face mask indoors and social distance. People who are sick should assume they have COVID-19, isolate, and get tested. Omicron’s symptoms include a sore throat, headache, general malaise, congestion, and fatigue. Go here for the latest COVID-19 information:
- Eastern Shore Health District – vdh.virginia.gov/eastern-shore or @EasternShoreHealthDistrict on Facebook. Or call 757-787-5880 or 757-824-5616 in Accomack County, or 757-442-6228 or 757-678-5111 in Northampton County.
- Eastern Shore Rural Health – visit the COVID tab at esrh.org or @esrhs on Facebook. Or call the Atlantic center 757-824-5676, Chincoteague center 757-336-3682, Eastville center 757-331-1086, or Onley center 757-787-7374.
- Riverside Shore Memorial Hospital – visit riversideonline.com/health-resources/navigating-covid-19 or @riversideshorememorial on Facebook. Or call 757-442-6600.