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COVID-19 cases continue to spike in Shelby County

Published: Jul. 24, 2021 at 9:13 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - COVID-19 cases continue to spike in Shelby County, causing more concerns for health experts as they urge people to get the life saving vaccine.

With 319 new COVID-19 cases, Saturday became the first day the Shelby County Health Department reported more than 300 new daily COVID-19 cases since February when the vaccine was first available.

This development continues alongside a downward trend with the intake of COVID-19 vaccines.

Dr. Jeff Warren, member Memphis Shelby County COVID-19 Task Force

“We are in exponential growth,” Memphis Shelby County COVID-19 Task Force member Dr. Jeff Warren said.

“Yes we’re worried about the numbers because they just keep rising,” Infectious Disease Expert Baptist Memorial Healthcare Dr. Steve Threlkeld said.

The infection rate for COVID-19 tests has jumped above 11 percent for the first time since the beginning of January.

Meanwhile the demand for vaccines, which health experts and studies say prevent serious illness and deaths from COVID-19 and the Delta variant, has stagnated.

Currently in Shelby County 393-thousand people who have gotten a vaccine, 56 percent of the health department’s goal of 700,00.

“It is time to get vaccinated. It has been time to get vaccinated,” Dr. Threlkeld said.

Meanwhile, the effort to get out the vaccine continues.

At Su Casa Family Ministries, a vaccine event attempted to get past any language barrier and reach out to the Hispanic community and anyone else who wanted a vaccine in the Berclair area.

“I’ve been wanting it for a while I just finally had the time,” Memphian Seth Wonderman said.

“It’s more viruses out there and I’m really scared. That’s why I came in,” Memphian Patricia Harris said

With 97 percent of hospitalizations and 98 percent of deaths from COVID in Tennessee coming from people who are unvaccinated, health experts say it’s frustrating situation.

“I think it’s a crying shame that what is a medical issue has been made political and people are just not thinking and I think it’s a crying shame that we got people that just don’t believe that they think they need it,” Dr. Warren said.

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