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JCCHS issues public health advisory

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WARRENSBURG — With COVID-19 transmission rates in Johnson County maintaining a significant risk level, the Johnson County Community Health Services Board of Trustees has approved a public health advisory for the county.

The public health advisory encourages individuals to take preventative measures on slowing the continued spread of COVID-19. The JCCHS Board recommends that individuals make the best decision for themselves and family. This could include following new guidance by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) identified in the advisory. Individuals are also encouraged to discuss safety precautions with their health care provider.  

This advisory, in accordance with the CDC, encourages fully vaccinated people within Johnson County to:

● Wear a face covering that covers the nose and mouth in public indoor settings in an area of substantial or high transmission rates.

● Get tested if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

● Get tested three to five days following known exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 and wear a mask in public indoor settings for 14 days.

● Isolate if tested positive for COVID-19 for 10 days or are experiencing symptoms.

The CDC also recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students and visitors to schools, regardless of vaccination status.

Additionally, this advisory recommends unvaccinated people within Johnson County to:

● Talk to a health care provider about the COVID-19 vaccine.

● Get the COVID-19 vaccine if one qualifies.

● Wear a face covering that covers the nose and mouth.

● Physically distance when around others who do not live in the same household.

● Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated indoor spaces.

● Wash hands often with soap and water. Use hand sanitizer when soap and water are unavailable.

● If exposed, follow the proper quarantine procedures.

● If symptomatic, seek out testing for COVID-19.

● If tested positive, isolate from others for at least 10 days, and notify anyone who would be considered a close contact.

Face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.

JCCHS states that as of Friday, July 30, of the 5,363 confirmed positive cases in the county, 5,209 cases are considered recovered while 154 were still active.

According to the local COVID-19 dashboard, the county's COVID-19 death count is at 59.

The state’s COVID-19 dashboard stated 22.4% of Johnson County is fully vaccinated, 14,028 residents have received their first dose and 12,128 residents have completed their vaccine.

Johnson County returned to the critical risk level for positive COVID-19 cases on July 19 with a 13.3% seven-day positivity rate.

JCCHS Director of Communication Kerri Lewis told the Star-Journal that on July 2, the county had a seven-day positivity rate of 2.7%, with the county having been below a 3% positivity rate for several weeks. During the first full week of July, the county had a large jump in positive cases with the positivity rate increasing to 7.8% on July 9. 

The positivity rate has continued to increase as the rate reached 14.8% on July 30.

To view the most recent Public Health Advisory, visit johnsoncountyhealth.org/news/covid-19-in-johnson-county.

For more information, visit cdc.gov/coronavirus, health.mo.gov/coronavirus and covidvaccine.mo.gov.

Individuals may also call the MDHSS hotline at 877-435-8411 for questions regarding COVID-19 in Missouri.

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