New River Health District reports bump in COVID-19 cases

Published: Aug. 2, 2021 at 6:12 PM EDT
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NEW RIVER VALLEY, Va. (WDBJ) - The New River Health District reports a bump in COVID-19 cases.

But as a new school year approaches, they’re encouraging folks remain vigilant in and outside of classrooms.

The New River Health District says they understand with a bump in COVID-19 cases, people may still hold many concerns.

“We understand that people are angry, tired, panicked and scared, and everyone just wants this to end. You know-- so again-- we’re living this real-time. So we have to, we learn as we go we have to adapt. We have to adjust; you haven’t, you know, we have to get through,” said Dr. Noelle Bissell, director of the New River Health District.

Universities in the New River Health District say they are in the process of gathering vaccine documentation from students who plan to attend in-person classes this fall. Radford University’s deadline is August 2, and they report a strong rate of submissions.

“Going along with what the CDC guidance right now is that indoors in a classroom setting. You’re just there, they’re recommending universal masking in our K-12 settings. You know I think indoors in a classroom setting, you know it’s probably not a bad idea to have masking. While we’re seeing those increases--- you know---in our curves right now with the Delta variant,” said Dr. Bissell.

Dr. Bissell says even though COVID-19 cases have gone up, hospitalizations and deaths have not.

“I do think we need to be very flexible --because we do know that the vaccine is incredibly protective, you know, once we do see that that peak and then start seeing cases come down again. Then I think it’s very reasonable that we look at going back to the previous guidance that vaccinated people don’t need the mask and unvaccinated people--- you know-- should be masking,” said Dr. Bissell.

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