Crawford County closes in on 1,000 COVID cases

• Public exposure reported at Steelville auction
    Crawford County COVID-19 cases are again rising dramatically, with large increases reported over the past two weeks. The county now has a total of 983 cases, showing a jump of 145 cases over the past week, according to Missouri’s public health dashboard. The state’s COVID website shows the new total as of November 15.


    The previous week—between November 1 and 8 —there had been 120 new cases reported, increasing from 718 to 838. Between October 25 and November 1, 89 additional cases were reported for the county, increasing the total from 629 to 718.
    According to the state dashboard on Monday, numbers included data reported through November 15. All seven-day metrics are based on the date a test or death occurred and are subject to a three-day delay to ensure data are accurate and complete. As a result, Monday’s numbers were for the date range of November 7 to 13.
    In addition to the state’s grand total of 983 positive cases to date in Crawford County, it reports 10 deaths, and a total of 9,127 tests completed to date. Over the seven-day date range listed, an increase of 136 cases is shown and no new deaths. There were 436 tests conducted.
    The Crawford County Health Department (CCHD) is no longer reporting numbers from its office. The local health department reported it was becoming increasingly difficult to keep the data up to date and accurate and recommended the state-maintained dashboard as the best source of data related to COVID-19. 
    Although the state website’s reported information is somewhat delayed, it provides in-depth information and has a team of experts ensuring the best and most accurate data possible is reported. The website can be found at https://showmestrong.mo.gov/public-health/.
    While no longer reporting numbers for the county, the CCHD continues to follow and contact trace each positive case reported to them and will continue to monitor these situations as they progress.
    Health officials continue to caution that any public activity should be considered a potential risk, and all precautions need to be taken to protect your own health and the health of those around you. The health department doesn’t report details on each case, but does release information on public exposures, as warranted. In these situations, no specific individual can be pinpointed, and exposure may or may not have occurred. Identifiable close contacts will be contacted privately by the health department, but everyone needs to be alert to the possibility of exposure.
    Last week, CCHD reported, during the process of case investigation in connection to COVID-19, a public place of exposure was identified. This exposure took place on Saturday, November 7 at an estate auction conducted in Steelville by Lorts Auction Services.
    The health department has been monitoring multiple positive COVID-19 cases that were in attendance and asks all attendees and their households to self-monitor for development of symptoms, limit non-essential activities, and—if symptoms develop—get tested then immediately isolate.
    Symptoms may appear two to 14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19: Fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea. This list does not include all possible symptoms.
    Anyone who suspects that they have COVID-19 or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, and are experiencing symptoms, should stay home and isolate from others, especially those at higher risk of severe illness. Call a healthcare provider to let them know before seeking care. It is critical that the provider is aware that a person may have COVID-19 prior to their arrival at a healthcare facility, and that the person follows all instructions for arriving at a healthcare facility.
    The health department asks that anyone who develops symptoms contact their physician, seek testing and isolate at least until test results are known. Potential contacts may call the CCHD office to be screened to determine if monitoring and quarantine are required. CCHD’s office number is 573-775-2555. Please do not contact the health department via Facebook.
    Health officials continue to urge people to follow the steps that can be taken to reduce the risk of getting any viral respiratory infections, including COVID-19. These include:
    • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
    • Avoid touching eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
    • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
    • Social Distance: Avoid close contact with others.
    • Cover mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
    • Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces.
    • Wear a mask or cloth face covering when in public.
    • Stay home when not feeling well; stay home after being tested for COVID-19.    
    CCHD has taken and will continue to take the necessary precautions to keep the community safe and will continue to diligently monitor the COVID-19 situation as it evolves by following the CDC guidelines to protect public health and limit the spread of this infection.
    For general information and questions regarding COVID-19, please call 1-877-435-8411.