Health Department confirms seventh positive COVID case

The Phelps/Maries County Health Department is urging the importance of staying isolated if sick after a seventh confirmed positive case of COVID-19 and three probable cases in Phelps County.

            The confirmed case and one probable case are connected to a congregate living facility within Phelps County. An investigation is being conducted by the health department, with assistance working with the facility and the Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) to identify any possible contacts. Contacts are being notified directly with monitoring and self-quarantining protocols.

            According to the health department, the facility is following CDC and public health guidelines regarding monitoring the facility and setting quarantine procedures in place. There are no other individuals associated with the facility reporting symptoms of COVID-19.

            The three probable cases are symptomatic or close family members awaiting testing, the health department said. Contact tracing is occurring during the investigation.

            Individuals who were at the following locations on these dates are at low risk of contracting COVID-19 and should monitor themselves for symptoms: Wednesday, June 17 around noon at Walmart in Rolla, for approximately five minutes. The person used a self-check station while symptomatic and not wearing a mask. Also on June 17 and on Thursday, June 18, one of the people was at Vaughn Pools in Rolla from 7 a.m. until 6 p.m. without symptoms, and not wearing a mask. On Friday, June 19, the person was again at Vaughn Pools in Rolla from approximately 7 a.m. until 6 p.m., became symptomatic and was not wearing a mask.

            If further public locations are identified of potential exposure, the health department will release more information as it is obtained. It is stressed the public should continue to monitor themselves for signs of symptoms and continue to maintain social distancing while in pubic.

            Symptoms include a fever of 100.4 degrees or higher, cough, shortness of breath, headache, sore throat, loss of sense of smell and/or taste, and generalized muscle aches and pains. The health department encourages the public to take appropriate precautions including social distancing of six feet, wearing a mask covering their mouth and nose when in public, limiting in-person interactions, avoiding contact with people who are sick, covering coughs and sneezes, conducting proper and frequent hand washing, cleaning frequently used surfaces, and staying home when sick. If sick, it is important to self-isolate from others.

            If anyone suspects they have COVID-19 or have been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, they should contact their healthcare provider before seeking care, unless it is a life-threatening emergency.

            For general information and questions regarding COVID-19, contact the Missouri DHSS COVID-19 hotline at 877-435-8411 or the Phelps/Maries County Health Department at 573-458-6010. The health department requests not to be contacted via Facebook due to the number of interactions taking place on the platform.