The Geary County Health Department recorded its 30th death from COVID-19 last week.

Four people are now hospitalized with the virus in the community.

There are a total of 45 known active cases of COVID-19 in the community right now, according to the health department’s count. A total of 37 people were listed as having recovered from their bout with the virus last week. A total of 43 new cases were identified in the community last week by the health department.

The health department lists Geary County as having experienced a total of 1,849 cases of the virus since the arrival of the pandemic in the community last spring. A total of 1,772 of these are listed as having successfully recovered from the virus by the health department.

The Kansas Department of Health and the Environment lists Geary County’s COVID-19 totals as quite a bit higher than the health department’s totals. The KDHE lists Geary County as having experienced a grand total of 3,763 cases of the virus since the pandemic was first spotted here in early April 2020. This difference — a total of 1,914 — accounts for cases on the Geary County side of Fort Riley, according to the health department. The health department only receives local numbers, while the state receives numbers from both the county and Fort Riley.

The KDHE also lists Geary County as having experienced a total of 42 deaths from the virus — 12 more than the health department’s count.

This is going on while Geary County experiences a surge of cases of the delta variant of COVID-19. At this time, the KDHE lists Geary County as having had 45 identified cases of the delta variant. The delta variant appears to be especially contagious according to the Centers for Disease Control. According to the CDC, it is especially dangerous to unvaccinated individuals.

In total, the county has identified 62 cases of COVID-19 variants in its boundaries, including 17 cases of the alpha variant.

Geary County continues to lag behind other counties in the state in terms of percentage of the population vaccinated. Geary County is no longer the county in the state with the lowest rate of vaccination for COVID-19, though it was for a while. It has surpassed several other counties, including Stevens County, Cherokee County and Doniphan County.

According to the KDHE, only 6,920 residents of Geary County have received both doses of the vaccine.

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