HUNTINGTON, WV (WOWK) – The Cabell-Huntington Health Department is issuing a health alert after a recent increase in COVID-19 cases.
Cabell County is reporting 108 confirmed and three probable cases of COVID-19 as of 4 p.m. Friday, June 26, 2020. The health department says multiple cases are associated with resident and nonresident travel to South Carolina, Florida and Tennesse as well as group events such as family gatherings. Health officials say cases ave also been found with no other risk factor, which they say can be an indicator of active community spread.
The county has reported 35 cases from June 15 through June 25, 35 cases have been reported in Cabell County, surpassing the 27 cases reported within the first two weeks of April as the state implemented restrictions to slow the spread.
The CHHD also asks people to make judgements to exclude themselves from high-risk activities such as staying home when sick and avoiding nonessential travel and gathering of people not in their household to protect against spreading the virus.
Health officials say investigations of recent cases have shown a low adherence to recommended practices, especially when it comes to physical distancing and wearing face coverings.
“Working together to take care of ourselves, each other, and our community is the most effective way to battle this pandemic,” said Dr. Michael E. Kilkenny, MD, MS, Health Officer, Cabell County and the City of Huntington.
Kilkenny is asking people to practice the following measures:
- For all Cabell County citizens:
- Use face coverings in the presence of others who are not members of your household, especially indoors, but also outdoors when distancing is not possible. The target for use is 60-80%.
- Carefully maintain physical distancing of six feet from others who are not members of your household at all times possible.
- Avoid nonessential travel out of state. During travel, use all recommended face covering, distancing, disinfecting and other measures to protect yourself.
- Carefully consider your participation in all events to assure your safety.
- For businesses and agencies:
- Review all policies and procedures to assure compliance with current rules and recommendations regarding allowed activities under the Safer at Home rules.
- Provide all necessary Personal Protective Equipment and disinfecting supplies as required.
- Strictly observe physical distancing and allowed occupancy.
- Encourage the maximal use of face coverings by employees.
- Consider travel restriction policies.
- Consider 14-day quarantine policies on return from high-risk travel areas.
- Continue to follow best practices for infection control as found in CDC guidance for your industry at www.cdc.gov.
- For health care providers and agencies:
- Review COVID-19 testing protocols and procedures to assure appropriate testing for with a goal of maximum capacity with minimal barriers to access.
- Be alert to the potential for increased caseload in outpatient and inpatient settings.
- Assure Personal Protective Equipment usage and supplies.
- Strictly observe all infection control protocols and procedures to protect patients and essential personnel.
- Report all cases of COVID-19 disease as soon as possible. As a category 1 disease under the reportedly disease rule it is immediately reportable to the Cabell-Huntington Health Department.
For more information, visit the Cabell-Huntington Health Department website, the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources website or the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website.