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Officials expect return of virus in the fall


HUDSON—“I’m definitely concerned about the return of Covid-19 in the fall,” Columbia County Department of Health (DOH) Director Jack Mabb said in the county’s April 26 Covid-19 update press release.

“Now, there’s another component to this, which the [Centers for Disease Control] CDC dropped on us this weekend. It appears that you may not develop immunity to the virus after having contracted it once. If there is no immunity, how effective would a vaccine be?” added Mr. Mabb.

County Board of Supervisors Chairman Matt Murell said in the release, “I would advise everyone to get a flu shot this fall. Having either the flu or Covid-19 is bad enough, but to wind up with both at the same time would be a terrible situation. And, if you have the flu and are infected with Covid-19 at the same time, there’s a good chance that doctors won’t know what exactly is going on and what the treatment should be.”

“This could be a very long-term struggle. Those of us who are working day-to-day expect to be at it day-to-day for a long time, as the virus may well return in waves. Long-term, our society is going to be much different going forward. We can’t go back to normal because normal clearly didn’t work,” Mr. Mabb said.

“Everything I’ve read and the discussions I’ve been involved in indicate that we can experience a Covid-19 resurgence in the fall and winter. Since we have more information now on the virus, we are somewhat better prepared, but it’s important to keep our guard up as New York State lifts restrictions,” county Emergency Management Director David W. Harrison, Jr., said in the release.

As of Sunday morning, April 26, New York State reported that 777,568 tests for Covid-19 had been administered statewide. Of that number, 282,143 yielded a positive result, said Director Harrison.

There are currently 13,433 individuals hospitalized, with 1,184 newly hospitalized. At this time, statewide 16,599 have died from the virus.

As of April 26 at noon, the county DOH reported 13 Columbia County community members have died from Covid-19. There have been 152 positive cases of the virus; 77 of the 152 cases have recovered from Covid-19; 15 of the positive cases are hospitalized, 3 of those hospitalized are in the ICU. The DOH has received 1,154 completed test results for Columbia County residents; 142 residents are under mandatory quarantine and 24 under precautionary quarantine.

The county DOH reports the number of confirmed positive cases by town and nursing home as of Friday, April 24: Ancram 5, Canaan 6, Chatham 7, Claverack 4, Clermont 2, Copake 4, Germantown 5, Ghent 16, Greenport 9, Hillsdale 6, Hudson 20, Kinderhook 12, Livingston 5, New Lebanon 3, Stockport 1, Stuyvesant 4, Livingston Hills 2, Pine Haven 31.

Anyone who wants to donate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as N95 masks, face shields, and gowns, are advised to contact the Emergency Management Office at 518-828-1212. If there is no answer, leave a message and someone will return the call.

Food donations should be directed to the county Office for the Aging 518-828-4258 and local pantries.

Monetary donations for the purchase of much-needed equipment for emergency responders, medical personnel and others on the front lines of the coronavirus fight can be sent via check in care of Columbia County, with coronavirus noted in the memo field. Mail the check to the Columbia County Controller’s Office, 401 State Street, Hudson 12534. All money received is being placed in a dedicated account.

A hotline has been established for the elderly and vulnerable in the county, including those with medical conditions or who are disabled and would welcome a deputy checking on their well-being on a daily basis. The number for the hotline is 518-828-0601 X 1400.

For the most up-to-date, accurate information visit the County Department of Health’s website at or their Facebook page at The state’s coronavirus website, with up-to-the-minute information, can be found at

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