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A sustained increase in the number of Fayette County residents seeking medical care for symptoms of COVID-19 and a sustained rise in the number of new cases has resulted in Fayette County being moved to a Level 3 / Red Alert in the Ohio Public Health Advisory System (OPHAS). Governor DeWine announced the change in today’s press conference.
According to OPHAS risk level guidelines, this indicates that Fayette County currently has very high exposure and spread. Residents should limit activities as much as possible and follow all current health orders.
“Since the alert system was put into place, Fayette County has alternated between yellow (5 weeks) and orange (9 weeks). At that point, the indicators that were triggered were due to the number of new cases and the level of community spread,” said Leigh Cannon, deputy health commissioner at Fayette County Public Health (FCPH). “Now we are seeing more people seeking medical care, and more hospitalizations.”
“In addition to our current outbreak at Fayette Christian School, we have been able to link numerous cases to large family gatherings like funerals, weddings, and church events. It is very important to avoid any large gatherings or crowds of any kind,” Cannon said. “Due to the rapid spread in our community, I urge everyone to stay home. Stay with only your household members when you are not at work or school or running necessary errands. Limit any other exposures the best that you can, practice social distancing and please wear a mask when out in public.”
“We as a community can reverse this situation and start trending back toward yellow but we need EVERYONE to take personal responsibility to protect each other TODAY! Lives are being dominated by this virus. It really saddens me to know that we are monitoring some very sick people right now, and we are seeing people we know and care about being admitted to the hospital. Our hospitalized cases are not able to have any visitors, and their loved ones are devastated by this separation. This is not a game. This is not a hoax. This is REAL and it is here right now and we have to do better! For one moment put yourself in the shoes of those so heavily affected by this virus! Compassion and kindness for others can go a long way. Help us get Fayette County back to YELLOW! We all have the ability and responsibility to protect each other!”
Fayette County triggered four out of seven indicators on OPHAS. The indicators triggered were:
▪ New cases per capita (290.9 cases per 100,000 residents)
▪ Sustained increase in new cases (.7 average cases on 9/21 to 7.3 on 10/
▪ Proportion of cases not in a congregate setting
▪ Sustained increase in outpatient visits (1.1 average visits on 10/1 to 2.4 on 10/6) In addition, as reported previously, there have been 83 new cases reported in the last 2 weeks.
Health department staff are working on contact tracing.
Cannon urged everyone to continue to avoid crowded areas, keep six feet between you and others, wear masks in public places, wash hands frequently, clean high touch surfaces often, and stay home if feeling sick. Individuals at high risk for severe complications and their families should continue to take extra precautions.
- FCPH Annual Report
- Communicable Disease Report
- Community Health Improvement Plan
- Community Health Assessment
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