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County rated at high risk for COVID

The recent spike on COVID-19 cases in Alabama has created a heightened awareness of the pandemic heading into the academic year.

The Pike County Emergency Management Agency will be meeting with school systems and local leaders later this week to review COVID protocols as the county transitions back into the school year.

Troy Regional Medical Center will also take part in that meeting. In addition, Rick Smith, Troy Regional CEO, said the hospital is encouraging everyone to get vaccinated. In the last two weeks, according to the New York Times Database, from July 20 to Aug. 2, 120 new cases of COVID have been reported in Pike County.

TRMC will hold a walk-in vaccine clinic this Friday from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Anyone wishing to receive the Pfizer vaccine should come to the front entrance of the hospital. The second dose will be administered in three weeks at TRMC.

On Wednesday, the Pike County School System issued an update to its COVID-19 policy for the upcoming school year:

“COVID positive rates continue to increase across Alabama.  Pike County continues to be classified as a high risk for transmission county. And, Pike County Schools currently have 10 positive cases, including some seven employees and three students.  It is expected that the number of positive student cases will increase as the school term begins.  Approximately 15 individuals are in quarantine. As such, the Pike County School’s COVID Reopening Plan will be modified as follows.  These changes will begin Wednesday, Aug. 4.

Mask will be required on all school buses, within all schools, and within all other school-owned and operated facilities. Visitors to school campuses during the school day will be limited to meetings determined to be essential and necessary by the local school principal or supervisor. All visitors must wear masks.  Masks are not required for outside school activities but are strongly recommended for events and activities where more than 10 are gathered.

Additionally, the system will be adhering to the recommendations found in the Alabama Department of Public Health’s Back to School Guidance document which is to become public on Aug. 4.”

The Alabama Department of Public Health plan can be viewed at alabamapublichealth.gov/covid19/assets/cov-school-guidance-073021.pdf.