This week, many companies return to regular post-holiday hours and staffing. As we welcome a new year and its endless possibilities, COVID-19 and the Omicron variant still looms, causing disruptions in our daily lives.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is working with state and local public health officials to monitor the spread of Omicron. But it is up to us to remain vigilant and help mitigate the spread of the virus by following CDC recommended guidelines within our businesses and homes.
In Chatham County, vaccine rates have risen to around 80 percent among our workforce, and COVID-19 related hospitalizations remain low. While the Omicron variant seems more transmittable, fewer hospitalizations have been reported, with most people exhibiting mild cold or flu symptoms or no symptoms at all.
Even now, the CDC urges that vaccines remain the best public health measure to protect people from COVID-19, slow transmission, and reduce the likelihood of new variants emerging.
We commend area employers who have incentivized staff to get vaccinated. Offering extra vacation days or even cash bonuses has been a great way to motivate employees for the greater good of keeping our community and our customers safe.
The City of Savannah and Chatham County have made free testing and vaccine sites available across our community. You can find locations here. And as a reminder, if you have not participated in the Savannah Safe Pledge, we encourage you to do so. The Savannah Safe Pledge is your commitment to helping stop the spread of COVID-19 and its variants with cleaning and disinfecting protocols to help ensure the health and safety of everyone in your places of business. Take the pledge here.
Thank you for your time and commitment to making Savannah and Georgia one of the best climates to do business in the world. We look forward to the growth and prosperity 2022 will bring and hope you and your team have a healthy and safe New Year.
President & CEO
Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce