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Broome County on Friday, November 19 reported 912 active COVID-19 cases and 67 people in the hospital. A woman in her 80s passed away, bringing Broome’s COVID death toll to 425.

Acting Broome County Health Department Director Mary McFadden says people have to get vaccinated to protect from the highly contagious Delta variant even though they won’t have full immunity before Thanksgiving.  McFadden says vaccinations and booster shots are the best protection but there are still measures people should keep in mind to stay safe when getting together for the holidays: wear masks, socially distance, hold smaller gatherings and it's a good idea to get tested for COVID-19 before getting together even if you feel fine.

Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News (file)

McFadden says 100% of the COVID cases in Broome are the more contagious Delta variant, which is responsible for all the breakthrough cases in people who are already vaccinated. McFadden says it is normal for immune response to wane over time so people who got their vaccines should schedule a booster as soon as possible with the health department, at a pharmacy or with their health care provider.

McFadden advises residents talk to their health care provider when scheduling a booster shot to find which brand is best for them since the CDC has said a different booster from the original shot can be administered.

Chenango County’s Health Department says their November 19 report of 593 active cases of COVID-19 is equal to the highest number of cases they have reported since January and attribute toe surge to unvaccinated people and reduced safeguards.

KEEP READING: See 25 natural ways to boost your immune system

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