Warcup updates Town Council on Covid

Fri, 10/08/2021 - 7:32am

Block Island Medical Center Director Dr. Tom Warcup had some good news for the New Shoreham Town Council on Monday night: statewide, the Covid numbers were trending downward. In Rhode Island, new cases were down to 182 per 100,000,
and the seven-day positivity rate was down to two percent.

Breakthrough cases had ticked up slightly, to now account for one percent of cases overall, with Warcup continuing his stance
that “vaccines are our best weapon.”
The doctor explained to the council that overall, only “three-and-a-half percent of hospitalizations” for Covid involve vaccinated people, indicating that the vaccines provide “significant protection.”
He reported that the Delta variant of the virus is on the rise, but still lags behind the Alpha variant in Rhode Island.
The Rhode Island Department of Health has informed Dr. Warcup that the Pfizer vaccine will be available on the island soon, for booster shots. The boosters will be for people who are six months removed from completing their second dose of the Pfizer vaccine. DOH will contact people through email to set up appointments for the booster shot.
Second Warden Sven Risom asked the rest of the council if they wanted to reconsider the mask mandate, “down the road,” once there are “less people on the island.”
Council Member Martha Ball pointed out that Columbus Day is still around the corner, and reminded the council that “last year we had as many cases in November as in the rest of the year.”
Dr. Warcup confirmed her recollection, but with the caveat that last November’s cases included a number of “specific family clumps of outbreaks.” He further told the council it was his opinion that with Block Island’s “high rate of vaccination, [Risom’s question] is a reasonable question.”