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Pike County Health Department also offering vaccine

The Pike County Health Department is testing for COVID-19 for those with symptoms and has the Moderna vaccine available.

Corey Strickland, administrator for the Southeastern Public Health District, said first and second doses of the Moderna vaccine are available at the local health department five days a week via drive-up services, which make receiving the vaccine easier for those being tested and safer for health department workers.

At this time, only additional doses are allowed for those immune compromised.

Booster vaccines for those who have completed the eight-month time frame following their second Moderna vaccinations will be available beginning September 20.

“Pike County has dropped off with testing, so large numbers are not coming in,” Strickland said. “Some people are hesitant to get the vaccines for different reasons. To make the vaccine easily accessible, we’ve gone out to Rex Lumber and to the chicken plants and have gotten decent numbers. We have gotten good numbers from the jail but, overall, the numbers aren’t booming. Some people are still waiting to be sure the vaccines are safe.”

Strickland said a lot of misinformation about the vaccines is being circulated so, to find the best right answers, he suggests contacting the Centers for Disease Control.

“With any virus, you are going to have breakthrough cases,” he said. “Some people that have a vaccine are going to get sick, with the flu shot for instance. So, it’s possible for a person to contract the coronavirus even if they’ve been vaccinated, but, unless there is an underlying condition, a person should not be as sick as they could have been. The vaccine reduces the danger.”

Strickland said Pike County’s COVID vaccine numbers are low but coming up. Those who have had one dose of the vaccine are at 37 percent and those who have completed two doses are at 28.4 percent.

A seven-day average for positive cases in Alabama is 21.9. Pike County shows a 23.8  positivity rate.

Strickland said people have been driving to the beaches, enjoying restaurants and are participating in open interactions without mask mandates and “we are seeing the numbers from it.”