Department of Health: Data shows masks and vaccines reduce transmission in schools | New

Data indicates that staff and students aged 12 and older who weren’t masked and unvaccinated were more than three times more likely to develop COVID than those who wore masks or were vaccinated. Of those who were both unmasked and unvaccinated, one in 30 who were exposed at school developed COVID-19. “Data shows that masks and vaccines are effective in reducing the spread of the virus in schools,” Health Commissioner Ben Robison said. “Last year, the consistent application of comprehensive prevention measures, including masks, distancing and quarantining of those exposed in schools, resulted in virtually no transmission of COVID. These measures are particularly important given the increased transmissibility of the Delta variant. “

At the start of the school year, the Wood County Health Department outlined the following preventive measures to minimize school transmission: • Identify those at risk and stay home when they are at risk of becoming ill.

• Stay home in case of illness and test for anyone who may have COVID-19 • Wash hands regularly, cover coughs and sneezes, maximize ventilation and cleaning and disinfection.

• Maintain as much distance as possible • Wear masks in schools

Starting next week, the health department will release data on school transmission every two weeks as part of its regular COVID-19 Thursday updates. “Our schools bring together students from all walks of life and backgrounds, students who themselves may be at higher risk for serious illness or whose family members are at greater risk,” said Robison. “We want to create an environment in our schools where everyone, including children with underlying issues or family members at risk, feel safe.”

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