Phelps County sees big spike in new COVID-19 cases

    After reporting a major increase in new COVID-19 cases today, the Phelps-Maries County Health Department is requesting that anyone that is being tested for COVID-19 to please make sure you provide current contact information (phone number and address) to ensure that we are able to contact you as soon as possible if your test result is positive.

    In a social media post, the department said, “Unfortunately we are encountering situations where the contact information on the lab report is incorrect or altogether missing. Attempting to obtain current contact information from the healthcare provider and/or lab is proving time consuming and often times the information is not available. Please call us at (573) 458-6010 if you receive a positive COVID-19 diagnosis and have not been contacted by health department staff within 24 hours.”
    Phelps County has had an increase of 23 cases since the department’s last update on Monday. That brought the county’s total number of cases to 121 and active cases to 36.
    “We are seeing entire households becoming positive during their quarantine periods. Several cases are reporting unknown exposure location with no recent travel history or contact with known positive cases,” the department announced. “These cases are presumed community transmission. It is best to assume that every location you visit is a location of potential exposure and take the appropriate precautions to protect yourself, your family, and your community.
    “It is critical that each and every one of us continues to practice preventative measures to help keep the spread of communicable diseases to a minimum. It is the utmost importance that any individual experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 isolate from others.”