DC sets daily record for COVID cases
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If you started to believe the pandemic was imminent, it’s time to stop. This week, DC set a new record for COVID cases, 21 months after the start of the pandemic. 508 new cases were reported between Dec. 14 and Dec. 15, according to DC Health data released yesterday. Just this morning, Ward 8 council member Trayon White announced he had tested positive for COVID.
“Our children and families are not safe,” he wrote. “We have to shut it down and shouldn’t unmask it. ”
The Omicron variant is partly responsible for this increase. To date, four cases of the variant have been confirmed in Washington. Although it was only discovered three weeks ago, it is contributing to an influx of cases taxing overwhelmed US healthcare systems. The vaccines are significantly less effective in controlling the Omicron variant. According to a recent article in the sinister title of Atlantic science writer Ed yong, “America is not ready for Omicron.”
“The threat of the variant is much greater at the societal level than at the personal level, and policy makers have already cut themselves off from the tools necessary to protect the populations they serve,” he writes.
This increase in the number of cases has manifested itself in several areas in and around DC. The number of cases will certainly increase, how will local leaders react?
COVID-19 outbreaks in at least two schools in the region have forced administrators to return to virtual learning. Ward 4 Whittier Elementary School was fully online this week after more than 100 students and staff were quarantined over 14 positive cases. Students will return to in-person learning on January 3, after their winter break.
“The decision to move the entire school to virtual education for next week was not taken lightly,” Principal Tiffany Johnson wrote in a letter to the school community. “However, with many students requiring quarantine and limited staff availability, virtual learning will allow all students to finish the calendar year on a strong footing.”
Georgetown Preparatory Academy has also seen an influx of cases. The private Catholic Boys-Only High School in Montgomery County has found 30 positive cases among the school’s 500 students. They will also come back after the winter break.
DC Public Schools did not respond to a request for comment. However, the Chancellor of the DC Public Schools Lewis ferebee Recount DCist there is no threshold that a school must cross before closing.
“We intend to be fully functioning until we can’t anymore,” he said, adding this about Whittier Elementary. “This was a scenario where staffing was impacted to such an extent that we could not continue to operate with the same goals for our learning environment. “
Georgetown University confirmed its first case of Omicron on campus on Monday. Just a day later, he announced that all students, staff and visitors would be required to be vaccinated if they were eligible. Since then, 34 students have tested positive and the university has implemented other mitigation efforts such as canceling events indoors or moving them outside and asking students to eat in. their room. The other exams will be taken virtually.
George Washington University and the American University have also announced similar recall warrants, while Howard University recommends them. In a statement, the AU said it had seen a “recent increase” in the number of cases, but saw no evidence of spread in classrooms or mess halls.
“There are no university or student organization sponsored events for students during the final exam period, so there are no events to cancel or change,” the press said. of the AU. “Our health and safety measures will continue at the end of the semester. The exams end tomorrow.
A mask notice remains in place, but the mayor Muriel bowserThe agency office did not say whether it would reinstate a mask warrant after it was lifted on November 22.
–Bailey vogt (advice? [email protected])
- To view today’s COVID-19 data, visit our coronavirus tracker.
- The first Metro train in the 7000 series is back in service after a two-month suspension. [WTOP]
- The University of Maryland cancels its winter start, joining local universities like Georgetown to cancel in-person events due to a spike in COVID-19 cases. [WUSA9]
- Two resource officers from a public high school in Alexandria are under investigation for suspected misconduct. [Post]