COVID-19 cases higher now even with vaccine being rolled out

Coronavirus Local Impact

AGAWAM, Mass. (WWLP) – Almost everyone knows someone who contracted COVID-19, or had it themselves.

Cases and hospitalizations now are at even higher rates, than in the first wave of the pandemic.

“Things in America right now are definitely on the scary side,” said Richard Dialessi, Agawam resident and Student at University of Northern Vermont-Lyndon. “This is definitely living through history. We have to help ourselves right now. This is obviously a stressful time on the psychological level.”

“The hospitals are full, the ICU’s are getting full, you can see the numbers people are getting infected every like 2 or 3 every minutes,” said Dr. Daniel Skiest, Infectious Disease Physician at Baystate Medical Center. “People are dying at very high rates.”

That’s why its so important to not let your guard down even with vaccines being rolled out. Geissler’s Supermarket is still making sure there COVID-19 protocols are being followed but overall they said people have been good about it.

“We are very happy with the results we have had here,” said Rich Whitney, Geissler’s Store Manager. “We even go above and beyond what they want us to do to ensure we not only protect the employees but every single person who walks through the door.”

The vaccine distribution has people’s spirits up, but there’s push to get it to more people.

“It needs to happen faster, right, we have to get this stuff going soon, we have vulnerable people out there, Springfield is especially vulnerable,” said Tara Parrish, Director for the Pioneer Valley Project.

There were 1.7 million new COVID cases in the U.S this week alone. New research shows that more than half of all COVID cases are spread by infected people without any symptoms.

Geissler’s said that they’ll be getting vaccines for their employees between February and April. Grocery workers are part of Phase 1 of Massachusetts’ vaccine distribution plan.

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