MAYVILLE – The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 doubled over the past week in Chautauqua County.
The County Health Department announced the news on Wednesday.
Health Director Christine Schuyler says the county is currently experiencing increased transmission, including hospitalizations and the highest rates of infections among school-aged children to date.
“The Delta strain of the coronavirus is very contagious and is especially making those unvaccinated very, very ill,” said Schuyler in a statement. “I’m saddened and frustrated to see so many people struggling to breathe, hospitalized, going on ventilators, and many survivors left dealing with long-term health impacts. If you are not vaccinated, you are really taking a chance.”
She says the unvaccinated account for the vast majority of severe cases, hospitalizations, and deaths from COVID-19.
Additionally, scientists are starting to see reduced protection against mild and moderate disease, which Schuyler explains is among the elderly and those with immunocompromising conditions.
“This waning of the efficacy of the vaccine is the reason for booster doses,” continued Schuyler.
As of Tuesday, 50 people are hospitalized in Chautauqua County hospitals with COVID-19, the majority falling in the age range of 54 to 64.
This, Schuyler says, does not include Chautauqua County residents who are hospitalized outside of Chautauqua County, such as in Erie or Warren counties in Pennsylvania or Erie County, N.Y.
According to state data, the peak number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Chautauqua County hospitals was 57 persons on January 13, 2021. Schuyler says the county is approaching that peak this week.