Booster shots of COVID-19 vaccine could soon be available through Marshall County Health Department.
County health department director Sue Rhodes said Tuesday that she expects an announcement from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment any day now about the availability of booster shots for those who received the first round of COVID-19 immunizations.
The department’s staff has been administering primary vaccine shots and third shots to immunocompromised people at a rate of about 50 to 70 people each Tuesday.
As of Tuesday, the county had 25 active cases of the virus with three people in the hospital with it.
No tests were pending Tuesday and no new deaths had been reported.
“Our numbers are staying steady,” Rhodes said.
The number of active cases remains in the range of more than 20 cases reported weekly, while hospitalizations have continued for some local residents with more serious symptoms.
About 60 percent of Marshall County residents over age 12 have had at least one shot of the vaccine, according to KDHE. About 57 percent of county residents over age 12 have completed the series of two Moderna or Pfizer shots or had the single Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
The state’s COVID-19 death count was at 5,916 as of Monday. Nationally, the U.S. recorded more deaths from COVID-19 — 675,722 — than from the 1918 flu pandemic, which killed 675,000 Americans, including several in Marshall County. Low COVID-19 vaccine acceptance in certain parts of the U.S. has led to high death rates in those areas.
In area school districts, where COVID-19 policies are set by their school boards, administrators are using quarantines to prevent further spread.
Marysville High School’s home opener football game was canceled last Friday due to COVID-19 exposure.
Twenty players were initially quarantined after a Sept. 13 exposure to an active case at a junior varsity game against Wamego, according to Superintendent Mike Couch.
Players were placed in a modified quarantine and required to wear masks in class and inside the school and to extracurricular activities. They could watch but not participate in practice.
The school district has applied for a Test-to-Stay, Test-to-Play grant through KDHE. They expect to know whether the district received the grant in about three weeks, Couch said. The test is a daily nostril test the school would use for those in quarantine if KDHE approves.