Harrison drops to ‘blue’ COVID status
Effective today (Wednesday), Harrison County is at the blue advisory level with regard to COVID-19.
The four levels of monitoring system are:
Blue Zone: Community spread is low and a county has a point score of 0.5 or below.
Yellow Zone: Community spread is moderate and a county has a point score of 1.0 or 1.5.
Orange Zone: Community spread is approaching high levels and a county has a point score of 2.0 or 2.5.
Red Zone: Community spread is high and a county has a point score of 3.0 or higher.
Forty-one other counties are designated blue zones with 49 counties yellow. Just one county, LaPorte, is designated as orange.
According to the Harrison County health department, the following guidelines are considerations for venue capacity or social gatherings to limit community spread: blue — 100% capacity; yellow — 50% capacity; orange — 25% capacity; and red — up to 25% capacity.
Face coverings are recommended for all Hoosiers. Local governments, businesses and other entities may impose more stringent requirements. Face coverings are required in all State of Indiana facilities and all COVID testing and vaccination sites. All K-12 schools are required to follow face covering requirements as outlined in Executive Order 21-09.
Health department officials said all businesses are required to maintain a COVID response plan that includes safeguards and measures to ensure a safe environment for employees, customers, clients and members.
Businesses should communicate to all employees that their activities outside of work have the potential to increase the spread of COVID in their workplaces and communities.
All customers in restaurants, bars, and nightclubs are recommended to be seated when receiving service. Individuals from non-household parties should be spaced six feet apart at tables, counters or other seating arrangements.
All Hoosiers should maintain social distancing of six feet in public spaces, inside or outside, especially when with others who are not members of their immediate household.
Frequent hand washing continues to be strongly recommended; when hand washing is not available, use hand sanitizer.
All Hoosiers are strongly encouraged to obtain a COVID-19 test and self-quarantine if they or a household member becomes symptomatic or have been in close contact with a person who has tested positive for COVID-19. All Hoosiers who have received a positive COVID-19 test shall self-quarantine and are strongly encouraged to cooperate with contact tracers.
Those who test positive are to isolate according to guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Also, persons who feel sick or symptomatic should not go to work or other locations.
Free COVID tests are available for those 16 and older. To schedule a vaccine, visit https://ourshot.in.gov or call 211 if you do not have access to a computer or require assistance.
Since March of 2020, 9,478,262 COVID tests have been performed (19,180 were for Harrison County residents), with 709,455 positive results (4,289 of them residents of Harrison County).
Statewide, there have been 12,826 Hoosiers die from the virus with another 408 people likely dying from COVID. Of those, 75 resided in Harrison County.
A total of 2,191,407 Hoosiers are considered to be fully vaccinated against the virus, with 11,005 of those living in Harrison County.
Individuals at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19, including those 65 and older and those who are sick or have underlying medical issues, are urged to remain vigilant about protecting themselves from exposure to the virus.
Hoosiers who will be in contact with individuals 65 and older and those with known high-risk medical conditions should suspend in-person visits if symptomatic or if they have received a positive COVID-19 test. When in contact with individuals 65 and older and those with known high-risk medical conditions, it is also recommended that CDC guidelines be followed (wearing a face covering at all times, whether inside or outside and regardless of whether six or more feet of distance can be achieved).
Each individual should engage in social distancing with all other individuals unless they are all members of a single household.
A “social gathering” is an event, assembly or convening that brings together multiple people, individually or from separate households, in a single location, whether indoors or outdoors, in a private residence, commercial venue or other public place, at the same time and in a coordinated fashion where a significant purpose is to interact with others such as a wedding reception, funeral visitation, family reunion, party, barbecue, picnic or club meeting.
An “event” is an assembly convening of multiple individuals from separate households in a single space, indoors or outdoors, at the same time but where the main purpose is not necessarily for individuals to interact with others outside of one’s household but to engage in or attend a business/commercial function, single event or events of limited duration, such as conferences, conventions, sport or racing competitions (including collegiate and professional sports), extracurricular school events, concerts, shows, fairs, festivals, carnivals, parades, graduation ceremonies, community holiday celebrations, fundraisers or other entertainment events.
For more information about COVID-19 in Indiana, visit the Indiana State Dept. of Health website at https://in.gov/coronavirus. The full executive order can be found at https://www.in.gov/gov/files/Executive- Order-21-09-Modification-of-County-Based-Restrictions.