Allen County reports two residents with COVID-19

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LIMA — Allen County has its first residents with positive cases of the COVID-19 virus.

Allen County Public Health received notice this afternoon of positive results of the coronavirus for two individuals living in Allen County, according to a press release from Kathy Luhn, the county’s health commissioner.

“We have been preparing for our first cases since we have known that community spread in Ohio was identified,” Luhn said in a press release. “We are prepared to work closely with our local healthcare partners and the Ohio Department of Health to move forward with the response to COVID-19.”

A press conference is planned for 5:45 p.m. today.

The health department urged individuals to talk to their medical provider if they develop COVID-19 symptoms, such as fever or respiratory symptoms. They may also call the COVID-19 screening line at 419-226-9000 staffed jointly by St. Rita’s and Lima Memorial Health System. Blanchard Valley Health System, which operates Bluffton Hospital, also has a triage line at 419-423-7890.

Providers are urged to report suspected cases of COVID-19 to the health department immediately.

On Wednesday night, Mercy Health-St. Rita’s Medical Center acknowledged it had treated a patient who tested positive for COVID-19. The health department clarified the patient was not an Allen County resident.

Luhn urged the community to continue following Ohio’s “stay at home” order, using good hygiene to remain safe:

• Wash your hands with soap and water often for at least 20 seconds.

• Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth.

• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

• Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

• Stay home if you are sick.

• If you have underlying health conditions or are an older adult, avoid large gatherings.

Read more about this story in Saturday’s The Lima News.

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