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KCHD recommends keeping Judicial Annex closed until April 27

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This undated electron microscope image made available by the U.S. National Institutes of Health in February 2020 shows the Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, yellow, emerging from the surface of cells, blue/pink, cultured in the lab. Also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus causes COVID-19. The sample was isolated from a patient in the U.S. According to a poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research released on Thursday, Feb. 20, 2020, a wide share of Americans are at least moderately confident in U.S. health officials’ ability to handle emerging viruses, and more express concern about catching the flu than catching the new coronavirus. (NIAID-RML via AP)

Charleston, WV (WOWK) – Chief Health Officer for the Kanawha Charleston Health Department Dr. Sherri Young issued a new recommendation to extend the closure of the Kanawha County Judicial Annex Building through Monday, April 27. 

“The judicial building is similar to the decisions as to schools, churches and other areas that provide large congregations of people, which results in community spread which has life-threatening consequences,” Young says, “Given that the investigation continues into positive cases, increasing community spread of COVID and for the safety and wellness of the employees, it would be my medical recommendation to extend the closure through Monday, April 27th, then reassess.”

At this time, eight positive COVID-19 tests relating to the Judicial Annex – seven employees and one spouse – have been reported, 30 negative tests have been reported and more tests are still pending. Access to the judicial building was restricted on March 21. 

“I respect and trust the advice and medical opinion of Dr. Sherri Young.  In the interest of public safety, the judicial building will stay closed to prevent community spread of the virus,” Kanawha County Commissioner Ben Salango says.

The county commission ordered the building be closed March 25 based on recommendations from the health department.

“We all understand how difficult it has been with the annex closed, but right now we are in the middle of a public health crisis.  This is about protecting the public, court personnel, and the Sheriff’s office. I believe Dr. Young’s recommendation is well-founded and I support it,” Kanawha County Commissioner Kent Carper says.

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