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Lee County encourages vaccination as COVID cases rise again

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FORT MADISON (WGEM) -- Even as more people get vaccinated, the coronavirus case count and positivity rate is up again in Lee County.

The Lee County Health Department announced Friday it was tracking 65 active cases and that the 14-day positivity rate was up to 4.4 percent.

Community Health Program Manager Emily Biddenstadt said they want to see the numbers going in the opposite direction.

"We do continue to receive calls on a daily basis from people asking where they can receive a COVID test. That's not the direction we want to take," Biddenstadt said.

"We want to continue down the path of lets get vaccinated, lets get back to normal."

Right now, 30.3 percent of Lee County residents are fully vaccinated.

Biddenstadt said they are seeing success from their pop-up clinics with one held at the Fort Madison food pantry on Wednesday, and the other at the West Point library Thursday.

She said about 20 people showed up to each clinic and the community response has been positive.

"They we're very appreciative that we we're able to be where they were at and being able to get the vaccine maybe a little closer to home or at a location where they were already going to be for that day," Biddenstadt said.

Denis Francis, who lives in Indiana, got her second Moderna dose Friday as she visited her mother who lives in Hamilton.

"I think it's very important you get your shot. Not only to protect yourself, it is to protect other people," Francis said.

"It is really worth taking the shot so you don't give it to your kids, your parents, other family members and the people around you."

With new mask guidance from the CDC, Biddenstadt said those who are not vaccinated need to continue to take necessary precautions.

"We're encouraging those who have not been vaccinated to continue to stay home and wear their mask, social distance, stay home when you're ill but like I said, the big thing is to get your vaccination," she said.

UPCOMING POP-UP VACCINE CLINICS:

  • May 20, 10:00 a.m. to noon at the Iowa State University Extension office in Donnellson
  • May 25, 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the Montrose Farmers Market
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Blake Sammann

Blake Sammann is a reporter and weekend anchor at WGEM News.

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