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COVID makes a stand
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covid tribune

It’s not your imagination: COVID is making a comeback.

Actually, it never went away, and this summer hospitalizations started ticking up across the nation. First Lady Jill Biden tested positive for COVID-19  on Labor Day.

This is true even though the Kansas Department of Health and Environment stopped updating its COVID-19 cases website back on May 31. That is when Governor Laura Kelly and the KDHE announced we were shifting to the next chapter, pivoting from emergency pandemic response to “endemic normalcy.”

Back then, KDHE Secretary Janet Stanek told us, “In our new normal, we will continue to ensure that Kansans have equitable access to life-saving vaccines, tests, and treatments.” Even then, Stanek warned, “This shift does not mean that COVID is over, but rather we are working to manage the disease in a way that allows us to maintain a more normal life that is once again filled with friends, families and other loved ones.”

If you’ve never done so, it isn’t too late to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Or the latest booster. Yet another booster is due out in the near future.

This week, FortuneWell reported U.S. COVID-19 infections are hovering near levels of the pandemic’s first peak in 2020, and approaching the Delta peak of late 2021, based on wastewater surveillance and modeling by forecasters.

That doesn’t mean we’re headed to pandemic levels of hospitalizations and deaths. It does mean we need to be vigilant.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends a booster vaccine for fall, but a majority of people in the United States skipped the last booster and probably won’t get one.

Even if it’s not COVID-19, there’s a bug going around and there are things you can do to improve your odds of staying healthy. Don’t forget to get your annual flu shot. Practice hand washing and other good hygiene. Avoid people who are sick and stay at home if you are sick. If you have symptoms and must be around other people, wear a mask.

We are so over COVID; except we aren’t.