44 new local cases of COVID reported

Published 8:21 am Wednesday, November 11, 2020

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As of Tuesday morning, the Lincoln County Health Department (LCHD) reported 44 active cases of the novel coronavirus in Lincoln County.

LCHD Director Diane Miller said there were a total of 128 contacts being monitored Tuesday, with four people currently hospitalized due to the virus.

Miller said there was one death in Lincoln County, but it has not been determined whether the death is COVID-19 related.

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“I’ll be sending that up to the state for them to determine if it’s COVID-19 related,” she said.
Last week, the county moved into the ‘red zone’ – a classification by the state which is tracking incidence rates among communities. The map, which is published daily, classifies counties into four groups including ‘green,’ ‘yellow,’ ‘orange’ and ‘red.’

The map calculates the daily average of COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents over the past seven days. To be placed in the red zone, a county must have more than 25 cases per 100,000 residents.
Lincoln County, which has hovered in the ‘orange’ zone for the majority of the time, moved into the ‘red zone’ last week, reporting an average of 25 cases per 100,000 residents. As of Monday, Nov. 9, Lincoln County was back in the ‘orange’ zone with an average daily incidence rate of 16.3.

Miller continues to urge caution as the number of cases increases in the area.
“Since we are a ‘red’ zone, we need to decrease our numbers when we gather,” Miller said. “Really just try to stick with individuals in your household.”

Local residents, businesses, government agencies and schools in red counties are being urged by the Department of Public Health to implement safety guidelines to help slow the spread of the virus.

The following guidelines are suggested for ‘red’ zone counties:
• Employers allow employees to work from home when possible
• Non-critical government offices to operate virtually
• Reduce in-person shopping; order online or curbside pickup
• Order take-out; avoid dining in restaurants or bars
• Prioritize businesses that follow and enforce mask mandate and other guidelines
• Reschedule, postpone or cancel public and private events
• Do not host or attend gatherings of any size
• Avoid non-essential activities outside of your home
• Reduce overall activity and contacts, and follow existing guidance.

The 7-Day incidence is calculated by taking the total number of unique cases in each county over the past 7 days, divided by 7 to get a daily average, divided by the U.S. census bureau county population, and multiplied by 100,000 to get the incidence per 100,000 people. The cases counted each day are based on the date an investigation was opened in NEDSS (i.e., National Electronic Disease Surveillance System). Duplicate cases are removed before the calculation, so each positive case is only included once. NOTE: State and local health department data will vary for a variety of reasons including data entry timing, communication processes, and 7-day averaging. (For more information visit kycovid19.gov.)