Poughkeepsie, NY … Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro today held his most recent virtual Town Hall Forum regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, updating hundreds of residents on the County’s response, vaccine distribution and other topics of interest to them. Dr. Sunil Khurana, CEO of Premier Medical Group, joined County Executive Molinaro to answer residents’ questions.
This week’s virtual discussion, and an archive of past events, is available on the County’s YouTube page.
Among the highlights of today’s conversation:
- County Executive Molinaro updated residents on the most current data available on the Dutchess County COVID-19 Community Impact Dashboard:
- 481,278 tests completed to date
- 20,255 confirmed cases to date
- 810 current active cases
- 113 current hospitalizations
- 19,063 recovered to date
- Positivity Rate (7-day rolling average) for Dutchess County: 4.77% as of Feb. 8th
- Confirmed cases of COVID-19, the County Executive said, have decreased by more than 1,700 in less than a month – from an all-time high of 2,576 on Jan. 16th to 810 on Feb. 8th. To continue that trend, County Executive Molinaro implored residents to continue the mitigation steps – proper hand hygiene, social distancing, mask wearing, limiting social gatherings and the like – to stop community spread of Coronavirus.
- County Executive Molinaro introduced the County’s new Vaccination Information Request Form, which gathers more detailed information from residents to assess their eligibility, under New York State’s phased distribution program and refines the County’s system to better assist those looking for information about COVID-19 vaccine availability.
The new Vaccination Information Request Form will replace current email notifications and does not pre-register residents for an appointment. County residents who had previously signed up to receive such notifications are asked to fill out the new form with their updated information in order to continue receiving notifications.
Residents who complete the new Vaccination Information Request Form will be added to the County’s notification list and will be advised when the County has an appointment at a Dutchess County Department of Behavioral & Community Health (DBCH) Point of Dispensing (POD), which may take several months, based on current supply. They will also receive updates about other local vaccinations options (state-run PODs, hospitals, pharmacies, etc.).
Appointments are not transferrable; if residents complete the form on behalf of a family member, that family member’s name and eligibility information must be entered on the form.
- Additionally, the County Executive announced seniors age 65 and older, as well as eligible individuals without internet access, can now call the County’s Coronavirus Information Hotline (845-486-3555 and press option 1 to hear a weekly update on vaccinations throughout the County, and then press option 2 to be connected with a representative from the Office for the Aging who will assist in filling out the new form and add them to a phone notification list for available appointments.
- County Executive Molinaro provided viewers with state data, showing that Dutchess County represents 1.5 percent of New York State’s total population, and has received 1.23 percent of the total COVID-19 vaccine doses the state has received from the Federal government, meaning 6.49 percent of the County’s population has received at least its first dose of the vaccine, compared to the other counties in the Hudson Valley region:
- Orange County (1.95 percent of state population, 1.33 percent of state’s total doses received, 5.26 percent of County population has received at least its first dose)
- Putnam County (0.51 percent of state population, 0.54 percent of state’s total doses received, 8.65 percent of County population has received at least its first dose)
- Rockland County (1.6 percent of state population, 1.77 percent of state’s total doses received, 8.78 percent of County population has received at least its first dose)
- Sullivan County (0.39 percent of state population, 0.24 percent of state’s total doses received, 5.21 percent of County population has received at least its first dose)
- Ulster County (0.91 percent of state population, 0.81 percent of state’s total doses received, 7.38 percent of County population has received at least its first dose)
- Westchester County (4.95 percent of state population, 6.02 percent of state’s total doses received, 9.52 percent of County population has received at least its first dose)
- In accordance with the state mandate for local health departments to prioritize vaccination of essential workers, this week’s two DBCH PODs are solely for responders currently eligible in Phase 1B of New York State’s phased distribution plan. Employers with eligible candidates, including school districts, fire and police departments, received a limited number of appointments to disperse to their members. All appointments for this week’s PODs are filled.
- As the County continues to address the pandemic, County Executive Molinaro invited qualified residents to apply for temporary vaccinator positions for which the County is currently recruiting. Qualified applicants must be 18 years of age or older who are medical personnel qualified to administer vaccinations or certain medical personnel, as defined by New York State. These temporary positions, offering up to 30 hours of employment per week, for a maximum of 12 months.
County Executive Molinaro has hosted more than 55 such virtual discussions since March 2020, and an archive of all such forums, including today’s conversation, is available on the County’s YouTube page.
County Executive Molinaro’s next virtual discussion will take place on Wednesday, February 17th at 3 p.m., when he hosts a virtual town hall on Dutchess County Government’s Facebook page. American Sign Language interpreters will translate the conversation on Facebook.