Missouri, especially the southwest corner of the state, has been labeled as the hottest spot of COVID infection in the US. While Nodaway County is not Springfield, the virus case numbers have been rising, with the highest count coming from those who are not vaccinated.

Barb Mullock, Mosaic Medical Center-Maryville’s infection prevention specialist, noted while vaccines do not guarantee the disease will never be present, obviously the odds are much better the individual will not have COVID at the level of seriousness with the vaccine.

The most recent report from the Nodaway County Health Center notes 55 active cases in the county, Mullock reported there are 52 individuals hospitalized in the Mosaic system with five in intensive care in St. Joseph. Maryville’s facility has four people in isolation with the virus. System-wide there were four on ventilators who would be seen as the “most serious.”

The Delta variant of the virus is the strain that is now most common, which is even more contagious than the original virus. Another fact that Mullock shared was the name of the variant is not because of geographical location that it first appeared but instead it is alphabetical. She also noted this strain mutates even faster than the others, however the current vaccines offered, Pfizer, Moderna and J&J, all have excellent coverage.

Those who are vaccinated and come in close contact with another infected person, probably will not come down with the sickness and if they do they will not be as ill. They will not “shed” the virus to others, so the vaccinated person will not need to quarantine.

Vaccines are available and plentiful at the health center, Mosaic Medical Center – Maryville, Rogers Pharmacy, Hy-Vee and Walmart.

“People who feel like the virus might be their condition, should take action quickly,” said Mullock. “We are giving infusions here at the hospital, which need to be done within 10 days or they can talk to their healthcare provider.”

She herself contracted the virus late last year and now six months later she would be considered a “long-hauler” as she still has the symptoms of fatigue, brain fog and taste/smell issues. She also noted another malady of those who had the virus that comes to some people due to the disease is Type 1 Diabetes as the virus compromises the pancreas.

“Vaccine is such better coverage than natural immunity,” said Mullock.

She concluded the interview by saying, “Many who are sick and have not had the vaccine make the comment, ‘I wish I had’ taken the vaccine.”

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