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Ocala
Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Marion County reports 662 new COVID-19 cases in latest bi-weekly report

Health officials are reporting that the number of COVID-19 cases in Marion County has increased for the fifth consecutive bi-weekly report.

During the week of Friday, May 27 to Thursday, June 2, the county reported 662 cases, which is an average of nearly 95 cases each day. The updated statistics were released as part of the Florida Department of Health bi-weekly COVID-19 situation report.

As of June 2, Marion County’s community transmission risk is listed as ‘medium,’ according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Based on the most recent reports, we appear to be seeing another seasonal increase in new cases,” said Florida Department of Health in Marion County Administrator Mark Lander.

“That said, our community should keep working to slow the spread of the virus. You can help with that by staying home if you’re sick, using good personal hygiene, and taking other precautions (that) individuals deem necessary for their own health,” added Lander.

Vaccines were administered to 64 residents, a slight decrease of four from the previous reported week (May 13 to May 19). The latest report shows that 63% of eligible residents are currently vaccinated in Marion County. All residents ages 5 and older are considered eligible.

COVID-19 vaccines for anyone ages 5 and older are available for free at the Florida Department of Health in Marion County. Visit the Florida Department of Health in Marion County COVID-19 vaccines webpage to make an appointment.

The Florida Department of Health in Marion County provides vaccinations Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and from 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., at its main office located at 1801 SE 32nd Avenue in Ocala.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved only the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for all age groups. Anyone ages 18 and older may choose from the Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

Under the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s latest guidelines, children ages 5 to 11 with moderately or severely compromised immune systems may receive an additional primary dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine after waiting at least 28 days from receiving their second dose in the primary vaccination series.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has also reduced the wait time for a booster dose for people 18 and older who have completed either the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccination series.

Adults and children ages 12 to 17 are now eligible for a booster shot five months after their primary series is completed. To reiterate, only the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is authorized for children under the age of 18.

Anyone who has questions about vaccines, whether for themselves or their children, should consult with their health care provider.

In addition to the Florida Department of Health in Marion County, vaccines are available throughout the county at many pharmacies, doctor’s offices, clinics, and health centers. For more information on vaccines, or to find a vaccine location, visit the Florida Department of Health COVID-19 vaccine locator webpage.

Curative, Inc., a mobile lab service, offers free COVID-19 testing Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Florida Horse Park located at 11008 S County Road 475 in Ocala. Curative uses a shallow nasal PCR test with results available via email or text message within 24 to 48 hours. Walk-ins are welcome, but the company encourages anyone seeking a test to visit the Curative webpage to register for an appointment.

Monoclonal antibody therapy is still available in Florida for anyone ages 12 and older who is considered at high risk for severe illness due to COVID-19. Monoclonal antibody treatments can prevent severe illness, hospitalization, and death in high-risk patients. Florida is continuing to provide AstraZeneca’s Evusheld, Pfizer’s Paxlovid, and Merck’s molnupiravir, which can be administered with a physician’s prescription.

For more information on the latest COVID-19 figures, visit the Florida Department of Health COVID-19 webpage, and click on the “Treatment Locator” tab at the top of the webpage for more information about monoclonal antibody treatment and other therapeutics.