Over the past several weeks, Rock County’s hospitals – Beloit Health System, Edgerton Hospital, MercyHealth and SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital – Janesville – have reported again seeing increased hospitalizations due to COVID-19.

Currently, there are 24 community members who are receiving inpatient care due to COVID-19 and its effects. Last week, on Wednesday, April 28, there were 17 community members hospitalized with COVID-19.

Rock County COVID-19 inpatient hospitalizations have come in waves. Recently, numbers have largely continued to rise.

In late February-March 2021, for example, the number of hospitalized COVID-19 inpatients was often in single digits throughout Rock County. Hospitals are now seeing those numbers double, triple, or even more.

Last fall, the COVID-19 inpatient census peaked at 74, which is an amount which no one wants to once again reach. Rock County hospitals would like to remind community members that although the COVID-19 vaccine is now available and some services/activities/events are resuming in the area, this pandemic is certainly not over.

Community members who haven’t already received the COVID-19 vaccine are asked to please make an appointment with a health care provider or local pharmacy. Other clinics such as the DHS Community-Based Vaccination Clinic located at Blackhawk Technical College are also available. Visit RockCountyShot.com or VaccineFinder.org to find a provider near you. If you need a ride to your appointment, call 2-1-1 for assistance.

The Johnson & Johnson vaccine has received an Emergency Use Authorization for individuals ages 18+. It is administered in a single-dose and maximum effectiveness is reached 2 weeks after the immunization.

Pfizer and Moderna vaccines also have received Emergency Use Authorization from the FDA. They are two-dose vaccines. Pfizer may be administered to individuals ages 16+. Moderna may be administered individuals 18+.

Community members who receive Pfizer or Moderna vaccines should take special care to receive their second shot as scheduled, and then wait an additional 2-weeks for maximum vaccine effectiveness to be reached.

Receiving the vaccine does not mean that it’s time to let one’s guard down. Everyone – regardless of if they have received the COVID-19 vaccine – should continue to:

- Wear masks or face coverings according to current CDC guidelines and the current Rock County Mask Order that cover both your nose and mouth

- Practice good hand hygiene, using hand sanitizer or soap and water

- Maintain social distancing of at least 6 feet

- Stay home when you feel unwell

Taking these steps will help us to protect each other. Together, we can once again flatten the curve!

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