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Harris still ‘careful to declare victory’ after drop in COVID-19 cases

Published: Feb. 7, 2022 at 12:36 PM CST
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Over the past two weeks Alabama’s COVID-19 cases have dropped about 60 percent, according to State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris.

Harris said it should take about two weeks or so to see those numbers reflected in hospitalizations.

“So, overall, it does feel like things are heading in the right direction,” Harris said. “But you know, we still know that there’s a lot we don’t know, and we’ve seen previous surges before, so we’re just a little careful to declare victory at this point.”

Reports have suggested COVID-19 may be a cyclical virus, meaning it’s not something we will one day be through dealing with.

“It certainly looks like this is going to be cyclical, it doesn’t seem to be tied to cold weather or to hot weather we’ve had surges at both times of the year,” Harris said.

Harris said the important thing is trying to keep people out of the hospital.

“Obviously, we want to prevent people from becoming severely ill or dying, we have the ability to do that with the vaccine. The vaccine prevents people from getting really sick, it prevents people from dying,” Harris added.

Harris encourages those who haven’t been vaccinated to do so. When it comes to your children, talk with your health care provider.

“The answer is always to talk to your child’s health care provider, you know, talk to your pediatrician or, or the clinic where they go, let that professional help you make the best decision,” Harris said. “We think the vaccines are going to be shown to be safe and effective in kids.”

Even though kids themselves may not be the ones who are sick, Harris said they still have the potential to spread the virus to other vulnerable community members.

“I think we are going to continue to encourage that people vaccinate their children, but ultimately, you know, parents need to talk to their own healthcare provider,” Harris added.

Harris added the decision to vaccinate children 5 and under is still weeks away.

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