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WAAY 31 spoke with the Alabama Department of Public Health and Colbert Emergency Management to find out why the county went from low risk on the state's new color-coded risk map to high risk in a matter of days.
The public health department said there are four areas that determine a county's risk factor. Those are testing goals, percent of positives, declining rates, and emergency room visits. All are factored into why a county may pop up as high or low risk.
"This particular graphic is related to trends and not necessarily cumulative cases or current cases or anything like that," said Colbert EMA Director Michael David Smith.
Smith, who wears his mask in public but removed it prior to an interview because there was well more than a six foot distance, said when he saw the change in the new map he called public health officials to find out why the county went from green to red despite having lower cases compared to other counties.
"One of the biggest things that caused us to move up was the fact that our percent of positives compared to those total tests was more than 10%. We're almost at 12% now, so 12% of all the cases they are submitting are coming back positive," said Smith.
Smith said Colbert County did well in having more tests available, and emergency room visits for people with coronavirus symptoms went down. Overall, the county isn't trending down.
"Our overall trend isn't declining under the standard that they would like to see. It's evened out but we have not started to decline like we needed to," said Smith.
Smith and the department of public health said they are urging people to wear masks while out in public, social distance, and do what you can to help stop the spread of this virus.