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A new year may be here, but has anything changed?

For almost two years, we’ve been battling the virus that shall not be named. It’s cost us graduations, holidays, weddings and countless other traditions as we’ve social distanced, limited gatherings and worn a mask.

With the development of the vaccine and following booster, many are attempting to return to normal life. As of this week, 46% of Johnson County residents over the age of 5 have been fully vaccinated.

But now that a round of omicron COVID is ripping through the state, it’s getting harder to stay open.

The virus is sidelining teachers, as well as city and county employees. Parents are once again questioning whether it’s safe to send their kids back to school, as many resumed this week following the Christmas break.

The numbers are drastically rising, with 2,216 active cases in Johnson County as of Thursday, compared to half that (1,093) on Jan. 1. So in less than a week our county’s numbers have doubled.

It’s spreading so fast it’s becoming harder by the day to find at-home tests or even get into the doctor for a test.

While Omicron appears to be less deadly than previous variants, that doesn’t mean everyone is protected.

For those who have not been vaccinated, what are you waiting for? What will it take for you to see how important it is to protect yourself, family and friends by getting vaccinated?

While we are no longer seeing hospital beds flooded, some of the same problems remain. People are still getting sick, resulting in quarantines and worker shortages. Businesses are already scrambling to hire enough employees, and having the ones they do have out sick just exacerbates the situation.

It’s time we step up, do the right thing and get out of our own way — get vaccinated, social distance and wear a mask.

 

Cleburne Times-Review

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