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Cuyahoga County allows stay-at-home advisory to expire, but officials say residents 'should not let guard down'

The measure, which was not an order enforceable by law, had been in effect since mid-November.

CLEVELAND — Cuyahoga County allowed its stay-at-home advisory to expire back on Jan. 31, Health Commissioner Terry Allan confirmed Friday.

At a weekly press briefing with other county leaders, Allan noted that the area has seen "some welcome decreases" in its COVID-19 case numbers over the last several weeks, mirroring a statewide trend. However, he also noted that the county remains four times above the CDC's recommendation for high-incidence spread, meaning it is still at a Level 3 "red" emergency on Ohio's coronavirus advisory system.

"We highly recommend that residents continue to follow the guidance," Allan said. "We know these prevention measures work. We should not let our guard down or consider the threat of COVID-19 transmission to be a thing of the past."

Cuyahoga's stay-at-home advisory had been in effect since late November, when virus cases began to spike throughout the county and Ohio. While it was not an order enforceable by law, it did serve as a recommendation for individuals and facilities when it came to mitigating the spread of the disease.

Friday's briefing was the first one held by Cuyahoga County leaders in the last two weeks. Officials gave on the county's coronavirus vaccine rollout for Phases 1A and 1B, and Allan said the county will see an increase in Pfizer and Moderna doses coming in by the end of next month. He and others believe this will allow health experts to better get the shots to minority communities, whom statistics say have been obtaining immunization at a disproportionately low rate.

RELATED: COVID-19 vaccine in Northeast Ohio: Here's where to find information on providers near you

During the last county COVID-19 briefing, Executive Armond Budish announced the county has entered into a partnership with United Way of Greater Cleveland to enhance the 2-1-1 HelpLink, providing resources for seniors and others with specific severe chronic diseases who wish to schedule and receive COVID-19 vaccinations. As our Laura Caso reported earlier this week, in eight business days, more than 9,000 Northeast Ohio residents have called asking for assistance regarding the coronavirus vaccine.

Through additional funding provided by Cuyahoga County and United Way, HelpLink also added 15 temporary staff members to work closely with callers over the next nine weeks to locate available vaccine providers near their zip code, as well as determine additional documentation or requirements necessary to register to receive the vaccination.

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