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Monroe County COVID-19 cases rise, but hospitalizations are not following suit

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Centers for Disease Control
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cdc.gov

Top Monroe County officials are reporting that the county continues to experience an increase in the number of new COVID-19 cases. A statement released on Tuesday by Monroe County Executive Adam Bello and Commissioner of Public Health Dr. Michael Mendoza said that the county reported another 352 cases of the virus (including 261 home tests).

The two officials said that at the same time, they are not seeing a corresponding increase in the region’s hospitalization numbers, but officials said that they are working closely with the hospital systems to monitor the situation.

Bello and Mendoza said they “strongly advise individuals who are at high risk of severe illness from COVID to wear a KN95 or N95 mask when in public spaces, and encourage any individuals who would like an added layer of protection to do so as well.”

Also on Tuesday, the FDA endorsed a fourth COVID-19 Pfizer or Moderna booster for individuals 50 and older.

But some researchers are saying a fourth dose may not be beneficial right away.

Dr. Emil Lesho is an infectious disease specialist with Rochester Regional Health. He said the fourth dose debate is causing a division among experts. Lesho said there’s not enough evidence to support either side.

“We don't know when is the best time, right? Because if it's, if we're about to see a big spike, maybe in BA.2, maybe now is a good time,” said Lesho. “But maybe it's not a good time, maybe we should wait because maybe closer to the fall, we'll have a spike of a different variant.”

Lesho believes the elderly and those who are immunocompromised should consider a fourth booster.

Racquel Stephen is a health and environment reporter. She holds a bachelor's degree in English literature from the University of Rochester and a master's degree in broadcasting and digital journalism from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University.
Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.