NASSAU COUNTY, Fla. – According to News4Jax analysis of CDC data, Nassau County has one of the highest rates of new COVID-19 cases per capita of the counties in the nation’s largest metro areas.
“We’re highly concerned about the amount of positivity rate we have in Nassau County and the amount of people that we have being affected by COVID-19,” said Greg Foster, with Nassau County Emergency Management.
As of July 23, the county had reported 9,903 cases, according to the Florida Department of Health. The positivity rate was 25.4%. In the week prior, 716.8 cases were reported per 100,000 people.
The Health Department noted that 51% of people ages 12 and older in the county have had at least one dose of the vaccine.
“We’ve had a surprisingly large decrease in demand since April, May. We were doing really well for the first four or five months then we saw a drop off,” Foster said.
On Thursday, News4Jax spoke with Tiffany Devereaux, who in five days lost her fiancé, mother and grandmother to COVID-19.
“I feel so lost,” she said. “I want my loved ones back. They’re the ones that always got me through the hard times in my life and now they’re all gone.”
Devereaux said her grandmother was the only vaccinated family member and was in poor health before contracting the virus.
“I know there’s a lot of people out there who are unsure or on the fence about the vaccination like we were,” Devereaux said. “I’m really regretting it every day that we didn’t.”
Nassau County Emergency Management plans to put up billboards and use social media to encourage more people to get vaccinated. They’re considering holding vaccine events to provide more places for people to get a shot.
“We have to get people vaccinated if we’re going to move past this situation,” Foster said.
School districts continue to finalize their plans for the fall. As of Friday, the Nassau County School District has said there was no plan to mandate masks for the upcoming school year.