COVID cases drop as officials still encourage vaccine

by Jordan Green

The number of active coronavirus cases in Oklahoma has dropped by more than half in recent weeks, state health officials said.

The Oklahoma State Health Department reported Monday that Oklahoma had 50,355 active cases of the coronavirus, down from more than 129,000 on Jan. 24 as the coronavirus surged across the state and nation. The Kay County Health Department reported Monday that the county’s cases decreased by 3.7% from the previous week.

The county has had 11,459 cases since March 2020. Nearly 53% of all Kay County residents over the age of 5 have taken at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine. Keith Reed, the state’s interim commissioner of health, has said vaccination is the “best way” to gain protection from the virus.

He also encourages people to wear masks in crowded public places and to get tested for the coronavirus if they feel sick. State officials reported Feb. 1 that 2,183,755 Oklahomans, about 59% of the state’s eligible population, were fully vaccinated.

More than 767,000 Oklahomans have taken a booster dose. Since the pandemic began, Oklahoma has had 997,783 coronavirus cases, officials said. Statewide, 13,594 people have died from the virus.

Blackwell has had 1,448 cases, with 1,280 recoveries and 41 deaths. Braman has had 71 cases, with 65 recoveries. Kaw City has had 139 cases, with 129 recoveries. Newkirk has had 947 cases, with 853 recoveries and 10 deaths. Ponca City has had 8,435 cases, with 7,421 recoveries and 122 deaths.

Tonkawa has had 802 cases, with 715 recoveries and 19 deaths. The state health department does not provide data on coronavirus cases in some of the state’s smallest towns, including Nardin in Kay County. Vaccinations are available for free at some pharmacies and stores across the county, among other locations.

For more information on vaccinations, or to schedule a vaccine appointment, visit vaccine-faqs.html.