County health watching for 'breakthrough' COVID cases

Chad Frey
The Kansan

Lynette Redington, director of the Harvey County Health Department, told the county commission Tuesday that the county has not logged a "breakthrough" COVID-19 case — yet. 


"These are individuals who are fully vaccinated, and two weeks after they have been vaccinated individuals who are developing COVID-19 and are coming up positive," Redington said. "We are watching for those and we have some special protocols to take care of those individuals." 

The county is monitoring 17 cases of the disease — well below the 34 that were monitored one week ago. 

"This is wonderful  and fantastic. It is great to that low," Redington said. "But till want  to remind everyone that COVID is a community spread in our county and there is still an ability to get it." 

 To date 15,125 individuals have been tested in the county, with more than 30,000 tests administered. 

As of Tuesday, there was one person hospitalized in Harvey County for the disease — a low not seen in months. 

"Hospitalizations may be down, It is because, again, during the beginning of covid we did not have all the facts and we did not have as much information," Redington said. " ... The people we hear about (now) are extreme verses what we used to have. We are able to treat people better and keep them out of the hospital. Plus we now have a lot of vaccinated individuals and that helps with the severity of the COVID."

The county health department has distributed more than 6,500 vaccinations since vaccines became available in December. The county stands at 354.4 per thousand people with at least one vaccination.

There are Five variants the state is watching, two from California, one from Brazil, one from the U.K. and one from South Africa. The South African variant was first found in the state last week. 

Kansas reported 1,441 new cases of coronavirus in the week ending Sunday, from 1,469 the week before of the virus that causes COVID-19.

Kansas ranked 46th among the states where coronavirus was spreading the fastest on a per-person basis, a USA TODAY Network analysis of Johns Hopkins University data shows. In the latest week the United States added 442,981 reported cases of coronavirus, an increase of 0.1% from the week before.

Across the country, 25 states had more cases in the latest week than they did in the week before.

Many states didn't report cases on Easter. That will make some state-to-state comparisons inaccurate and also some in-state week-to-week comparisons inaccurate.

Within Kansas, the worst weekly outbreaks on a per-person basis were in Graham, Bourbon and Woodson counties. Adding the most new cases overall were Johnson County, with 385 cases; Sedgwick County, with 213 cases; and Shawnee County, with 147.

Weekly case counts rose in 31 counties from the previous week. The worst increases from the prior week's pace were in Wyandotte, Johnson and Sedgwick counties.

>> See how your community has fared with recent coronavirus cases

Kansas ranked 26th among states in share of people receiving at least one shot, with 31.9% of its residents at least partially vaccinated. The national rate is 30.7%, a USA TODAY analysis of CDC data shows.

In the week ending Friday, Kansas reported administering another 196,693 vaccine doses, compared to 172,827 the week before that. In all, Kansas reported it has administered 1,367,364 doses.

Across Kansas, cases fell in 51 counties, with the best declines in Labette, Ford and Neosho counties.

In Kansas, 41 people were reported dead of COVID-19 in the week ending Sunday. In the week before that, 50 people were reported dead.

A total of 304,429 people in Kansas have tested positive for the coronavirus since the pandemic began, and 4,889 people have died from the disease, Johns Hopkins University data shows.

In the United States 30,706,126 people have tested positive and 555,001 people have died.

—  Mike Stucka, USAToday, contributed to this report