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DPH: New “Know your COVID-19 Community Level” tool available from CDC
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Medical personnel administer COVID-19 tests at Rock Creek Park. - photo by Ben Hendren

The CDC has recently released a new “Know your COVID-19 Community Level” tool, which provides a county-by-county look at COVID-19 levels throughout the U.S. 

According to a press release by the Department of Public Health (DPH), the goal of the new tool is to help communities assess the current level of COVID-19 cases in the community and to use this level to determine what precautions to take to protect against furthering the spread. 

“It is designed to help communities decide what prevention steps are needed based on several factors: hospital beds in use, hospital admissions and total of new cases in the area,” the release said. “The data is then categorized into low, medium and high levels.” 

The tool then offers step-by-step instructions for each category on how to avoid catching or spreading the virus in your specific community. 

As of the time of the DPH release on March 1, the new tool describes Dawson County’s current community level as high. According to the website, members of the community are encouraged to wear a mask indoors in public, stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccines, get tested if symptoms occur and consider additional precautions for those who are at high risk for severe illness. 

An accompanying release by the DPH gave the most current available numbers of cases in Dawson, showing a downward trend in the numbers after the large spike in positive cases the county saw in the beginning of January. 

According to the release, Dawson County has seen a total of 6,095 positive cases, with a 14 day case rate of 204 per 100K. In total, Dawson has had 386 total hospitalizations and 93 total deaths. 

For more information about the “Know your COVID-19 Community Level” tool and to determine your community’s current level, go to the CDC website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/your-health/covid-by-county.html