Dougherty leaders: Certain measures not being taken to curb coronavirus spread

Dougherty County
Dougherty County(WALB)
Published: Sep. 10, 2021 at 5:00 PM EDT
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ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - Dougherty County leaders said certain measures aren’t being taken to help slow the spread of coronavirus in the community — a message consistent throughout Friday’s COVID-19 Task Force meeting.

Southwest Health District Director Dr. Charles Ruiz said people are not quarantining when they have symptoms, making the spread worse.

Albany Mayor Bo Dorough giving an update during Friday's COVID-19 task force meeting in...
Albany Mayor Bo Dorough giving an update during Friday's COVID-19 task force meeting in Dougherty County. (WALB)

Several people at Friday’s meeting, including Albany Mayor Bo Dorough, used the number of people on ventilators and at hospitals to renew the push to get vaccinated.

“I hear time and time again of people on ventilators who refuse to be vaccinated and those who come out of the hospital — the first thing they’re doing is telling their loved ones to get vaccinated. It shouldn’t come to this,” Dorough said.

Phoebe Putney Health System reported Friday they’ve seen a 24% decrease in the number of COVID-19 patients. That’s since the summer peak nearly three weeks ago.

The bad news, hospital system officials said, is that the number of critically ill patients went up.

Phoebe officials also said their intensive care units are full, with more than 80% of those patients on ventilators.

Dougherty County Coroner Michael Fowler said eight people have died since last week’s task force meeting.

Fowler called for the African-American community and veterans to step up.

”We need to stop playing games. Let’s be real. I want to say it for real. I can say it — our Black community has been affected hard, so there should be no reason why veterans should not get the vaccine. When you went into service, you didn’t ask what was in the shot. You got all kinds of shots to go across sea. You got shot. You didn’t ask what was in it. Years ago, when we got Polio shots, and all kinds, you didn’t ask the doctor what was in it. You took it because you trusted the scientists. What can’t we trust the scientist now,” Fowler said.

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