Hello, this is Ron Woody, Roane County Executive, with a Wednesday morning, March 3rd Covid-19 update.
I extended the County Mask Mandate to March 31st, and we do anticipate that this will be the last extension.
Our plans are not to extend; however, circumstances can change, but we are not anticipating anything that would cause an extension.
Roane County, as well as many counties, are seeing improvement in the data we are following, and most specifically in reduction of hospitalizations and deaths.
I talk to our County Coroner generally weekly, and the hospitalizations and deaths are two (2) of our best indications of improvement and recovery from the Covid Pandemic.
Also, improvement is the number of sites (Pharmacy/Drug Stores) that were approved to administer the vaccine.
There are a number of reasons I extended the mask mandate for another month, but these are the two (2) main reasons:
Roane County continues to lead the area in positive cases per capita with a little over 11% of our population who have tested positive. We are a little better than Rhea County at 12.5%. Knox County is ranking the best of the nine (9) counties with only 8.5% positivity rate.
The second factor is the percentage of residents that have received at least one (1) vaccine. Roane County is only behind McMinn for the lowest vaccinations of our population. For the nine (9) counties, McMinn is at 10.74% and Roane is at 11.9%. Loudon County is at 19.65% and Cumberland at 18.18% which are the leading counties.
County Population First Dose
Some good news is the Johnson and Johnson vaccine was approved Friday, and has teamed up with another medical company, Merck, to speed up production and distribution.
More good news is according to the State, Roane County now has seven (7) sites that are eligible to receive and give the vaccine.
If you go to vaccinefinder.org you can put in your zip code for the nearest locations.
Even more good news, on March 8th Tennessee goes to the fourth (4th) Risk Base phase 1c which is high risk comorbidities or individuals with other high risk health conditions.
So, in summary:
Positive rates are down.
Hospitalizations and deaths are down.
More vaccines are becoming available.
More distribution areas are becoming available.
We anticipate the mask mandate ending at the end of March, although, the courthouse will probably still have the restrictions due to being controlled by the State Supreme Court.
So, Roane County’s statistics:
Percentage of Positives of those tested- 13.04%
Percentage of Positives of Roane County Population- 11.07%
Positivity Rate as on March 2nd- 17.24%
Total Active Cases- 153 or 3%
Total Recovered- 5,658 or 97%
Total Deaths- 96
Please visit this website https://covid19.tn.gov/vaccinephase/roane-county/ to register for a vaccine.
To find a location for vaccines, please visit www.vaccinefinder.org
More good news is coming. Thanks for tuning in.