HUDSON — Columbia County reported another COVID-related death Thursday afternoon, bringing the total to 82.

The Columbia County Department of Health has reported 32 of its 82 coronavirus deaths, or 39%, since Jan. 1.

In Greene County, there have been 63 COVID deaths since the beginning of the pandemic. Greene County Public Health has reported 35, or 55.5%, of those deaths since Jan. 1.

In all, the Columbia County Department of Health has reported 3,361 positive cases of COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic. The county has 255 active positive cases and 276 residents in mandatory quarantine. There are 25 people hospitalized with the virus including two in the intensive care unit.

Greene County Public Health has reported 2,425 COVID cases since the beginning of the pandemic in the middle of March. There are 92 active cases in the county, 258 residents in quarantine and 12 individuals hospitalized with the virus.

Individuals in the state’s 1A and 1B categories are eligible to receive a COVID vaccine, including health care workers, first responders, essential workers and people over 65, among others.

Greene County Public Health has inoculated about 2,100 people over the past several weeks, according to the department’s website.

As of last weekend, Columbia County had vaccinated 2,082 people with their first dose of the vaccine and 410 people with the second dose. This week the county received an additional 100 doses to give to essential workers, with the majority administered to teachers and school employees.

The state is expanding vaccine eligibility Monday to also include individuals with cancer, kidney disease, heart conditions, diabetes, obesity, pregnancy, liver disease and intellectual and developmental disabilities.

While this substantially expands the list of people eligible to receive a vaccination, the number of doses allocated to health departments for distribution is not increasing significantly at this time, Columbia County Health Department Director Jack Mabb said.

The number of positive COVID tests has been declining in Greene and Columbia counties. The current seven-day rolling average positivity rate in both counties is 3.7% and the rolling 14-day average in both counties is 4.5%, according to the state’s positivity dashboard.

In January, Columbia County saw several days when its rolling averages were as high as 7% to 8% and Greene County had several days of rolling averages as high as 10% to 11%.

“This is terrific. We’re seeing a precipitous drop in the infection rate,” Mabb said in a statement.

Columbia County again renewed its declared state of emergency Thursday because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The current state of emergency will extend the declaration an additional 30 days until March 13, unless it is otherwise rescinded or modified.

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Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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