NORTH ALABAMA (WHNT) — Alabama health officials say another spike in COVID-19 cases could be on the horizon as we turn a corner into colder weather and the holiday season.
Before Thanksgiving, the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) saw about 400 new cases per day — that number has now doubled.
In November, hospitalizations for the flu were higher than for COVID-19, but ADPH District Medical Officer Wes Stubblefield says while flu numbers are down, 300 inpatients currently have COVID-19.
Because hospitals are serving patients with both COVID-19 and the flu, in addition to routine illnesses, Stubblefield says some hospitals are seeing strain on their bed availability. He encourages those who plan to travel for the holidays — to check local transmission rates — and take precautions.
“We just need to be very cautious,” Stubblefield said. “That’s why we want peopel to stay up-to-date on their vaccination. If they are high risk, they [should] consider talking to their provider about what happens, and medication and treatment that’s right for them.”
Stubblefield says, instead of a single large case spike, we may just have a period high transmission rates like we saw this summer.
A new COVID-19 booster is available. It combines the original vaccine with a protein that better combats later COVID-19 stands like Omicron. Stubblefield says all the cases circulating in Alabama right now are of the Omicron lineage.