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Our community is experiencing a surge of COVID-19 causing longer lines at our urgent care centers. As a result, operating hours may be affected. Please call ahead to confirm space availability

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Augusta Health Vaccine Clinic Update: December 30, 2021

December 30, 2021
Published in: COVID-19

Current Situation
Over the past 24 hours, COVID-19 levels in our community reached an unprecedented high. At Augusta Health, we have again escalated our Surge Plan to meet these growing volumes.

Over the past four days, our Augusta Health testing positivity rate has risen to 35%, which is a significant increase over the past week and is expected to remain high.

Our current inpatient COVID-19 census is 29, with two deaths since Monday.

In the 24 hours preceding 9:00 am on Thursday, December 30, 171 new positive cases of COVID were diagnosed at Augusta Health testing sites. This is a new record for daily positive tests. The previous record daily total was 120 on September 12, 2021.

This high prevalence and positivity rate is straining the demand for COVID testing at our Urgent Cares and increasing wait times considerably. Effective immediately, in order to allow us to prioritize patients who need treatment, Augusta Health Urgent Cares will only test those who have COVID symptoms. This new policy is consistent with other area hospitals at this time. Please only go to Urgent Care for COVID-19 testing if you have symptoms of COVID. COVID-19 tests are available at local pharmacies and as a home test for those who do not have symptoms.

The Emergency Department should be used only by those with critical care needs.

Augusta Health is reviewing its current Visitation Policy and will post the revised policy on Monday.

Augusta Health continues to align with the CDC's isolation and quarantine guidance and recommendations for those who test positive or are exposed to COVID-19. We advise all who might have been exposed to follow the recommendations, too. These recommendations were updated on December 27.

This weekend is New Year's Eve, a time for celebration. Please celebrate responsibly: Assess the risk for exposure to COVID-19 and adapt plans as necessary to keep yourself and everyone in the community safe and healthy. Stay home if possible. Social distance, mask and wash hands frequently.

Prevention is still the best option to minimize the impact of COVID-19. If you are not vaccinated, please get vaccinated to reduce the severity of illness, the risk for hospitalization, and the level of contagiousness.

CDC RECOMMENDATIONS FOR ISOLATION AND QUARANTINE FOR COVID-19 for the General Population
Released Monday, December 27, 2021

IF YOU TEST POSITIVE FOR COVID-19 (ISOLATE)
Everyone, regardless of vaccination status.

  • Stay home for 5 days.
  • If you have no symptoms or your symptoms are resolving after 5 days, you can leave your house.
  • Continue to wear a mask around others for 5 additional days.
    If you have a fever, continue to stay home until your fever resolves.

IF YOU WERE EXPOSED TO SOMEONE WITH COVID-19 (QUARANTINE)
If you:

Have been boosted
OR
Completed the primary series of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine within the last 6 months
OR
Completed the primary series of J&J vaccine within the last 2 months

  • Wear a mask around others for 10 days.
  • Test on day 5, if possible.
    If you develop symptoms get a test and stay home.

If you:
Completed the primary series of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine over 6 months ago and are not boosted
OR
Completed the primary series of J&J over 2 months ago and are not boosted
OR
Are unvaccinated

  • Stay home for 5 days. After that continue to wear a mask around others for 5 additional days.
  • If you can't quarantine you must wear a mask for 10 days.
  • Test on day 5 if possible.
    If you develop symptoms get a test and stay home

CDC's updated recommendations for isolation and quarantine balance what we know about the spread of the virus and the protection provided by vaccination and booster doses. These updates ensure people can safely continue their daily lives. Prevention is our best option: get vaccinated, get boosted, wear a mask in public indoor settings in areas of substantial and high community transmission, and take a test before you gather."

Source: https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2021/s1227-isolation-quarantine-guidance.html)