Posted on January 11, 2022 by Sonoma Valley Sun
Mask up, avoid crowds, get vaccinated and stay vigilant. That’s the advice of Sonoma Valley Hospital Covid infections among the unvaccinated in Sonoma County have skyrocketed compared to cases among the vaccinated.
Masking and social distancing offer some protection, but vaccines are the key to preventing serious illness and hospitalizations.
SVH reports that close to 84% of Sonoma Valley’s population (zip code 95476) has been vaccinated and the number of those being boosted is growing. But in the past 16 days, the number of Covid-related visits to the SVH Emergency Department has risen. “We are again seeing serious illness and hospitalizations,” officials said in a statement today. “We find the majority of those requiring hospitalization, and especially ICU-level care, are not up-to-date with their COVID-19 vaccinations or are unvaccinated.”
To reduce and mitigate the spread of Covid, the County Public Officer has issued Health Order C19-35 which prohibits large gatherings (indoors: 50 or more; outdoors: 100 or more) and urges voluntary isolation. The order goes into effect midnight January 12 and continues through February 11, 2022 unless the County Health Officer amends, supersedes, extends, or rescinds it
Sonoma Valley Hospital, the Sonoma Valley Community Health Center and the County are doing all they can despite staffing shortages to ensure that everyone has access to testing and vaccines,” said John Hennelly, hospital president and CEO. “More sites should be available in the next several weeks. Your patience is needed and appreciated.”
Even the clinics themselves are being strained. Today (1/11) pop-up clinic in Boyes Hot Springs was canceled due to a staffing shortage.
Prevention, best tools to use
The current Covid variant, Omicron, spreads easily and quickly. In most incidents symptoms are apparent within a couple of days following exposure. People who have up-to-date vaccinations (primary series and a booster), yet still get the virus, are found to experience fewer symptoms on average. To help prevent and mitigate the spread of COVID-19, SVH recommends the following guidelines:
- Wear a surgical style or better mask to protect yourself and others and stop the spread of COVID-19.
- Stay at least 6 feet apart (about 2 arm lengths) from others who don’t live with you.
- Continue supporting local eateries in Sonoma Valley through curbside pick-up or delivery to avoid unmasked indoor settings.
- Avoid all large indoor settings for now.
- Get Up-to-Date vaccine status = primary dose(s) + booster
(J&J 1-dose+booster, Pfizer and Moderna 2-doses + booster).
- Clean your hands often.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick or Covid positive. If you live with someone who might be positive, isolate them as much as possible and wear a mask in common spaces.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands.
- Clean frequently touched objects and surfaces daily. If someone is sick or has tested positive for COVID-19, disinfect frequently touched surfaces, and wash your hands.
- Monitor your health daily and immediately isolate and seek testing should you develop any symptoms of Covid-19 and follow-up with your healthcare provider as needed.
- If your symptoms are severe, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest Emergency Department
There are currently two recurring Sonoma County testing sites in the Valley: Fiesta Plaza Monday – Fridays from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm, appointment only; Boyes Hot Springs Park ‘n Ride Sundays from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm, appointment only. New appointments appear daily so keep checking! COVID testing at Sonoma Valley Hospital is by physician order determined by severity of symptoms and exposures. To learn more about recurring and pop-up testing sites serving Sonoma Valley and Sonoma County, visit: www.sonomavalleyhospital.org
Vaccines and Boosters: Sonoma Valley Community Health Center is managing the majority of pediatric and adult vaccine and booster sites in the Valley. Fox Home Health (Santa Rosa) directs a pop-up clinic in collaboration with the S.O.S. at the Springs Community Hall. To learn more about vaccine clinics based in Sonoma Valley, visit: www.sonomavalleyhospital.org
If you do not have a primary healthcare provider, many agencies in the Valley and in the County can assist you. Please connect with our Community Outreach team for assistance: 707.935.5257.
Community Resources can be found at:
Sonoma Valley Hospital: https://www.sonomavalleyhospital.org
SVH Community Outreach: 707.935.5257 or [email protected]
Sonoma Valley Community Health Center: https://svchc.org
Sonoma Valley Health Partners: https://www.svhpvaccines.org
City of Sonoma/Community Resources: https://www.sonomacity.org
Sonoma County/County Resources and Covid data: https://www.socoemergency.org
La Luz Center: https://www.laluzcenter.org or 707.938.5131
Vintage House: https://www.vintagehouse.org or 707.996.0311