Mark Hensley, the director of the Laurel County Health Department, would like to release the following statement concerning COVID-19:
The Laurel County Health Department hosted a meeting on Monday, March 9 with long term care facilities, elected officials, school officials, emergency management, local and state law enforcement, hospital personnel, London Laurel Rescue and other key community partners to discuss the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak throughout our Commonwealth.
Becki Patton, Regional Preparedness Coordinator – KYDPH, discussed that this is a rapidly evolving situation and the importance of our key community partners reviewing their agency plans and the importance of working together.
Gabriella Hodges, Regional Epidemiologist – Laurel County Health Department, shared the epidemiological aspects of surveillance and testing as well as what would happen if Laurel County has a positive case.
Hensley stated that the Laurel County Health Department has activated its Department of Operations (DOC) as well as implemented its Disease Outbreak Support Plan (DOSP) – a plan that provides operational framework for the Laurel County Health Department to manage a suspected or confirmed communicable disease patient within Laurel County.
Please stay informed with the latest, factual information from the website (http://kycovid19.ky.gov). The Laurel County Health Department will also be sharing information via our Facebook page (Laurel County Health Department) and on our website (www.laurelcohealthdept.org).
There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid exposure.
•Avoid close contact with people who are sick (fever, cough, sneeze, and difficulty breathing). To avoid close contact, stay at least 6 feet away from others.
•Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
•Stay home when you are sick.
•Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. To avoid coughing into your hands, you can cough into your elbow.
•Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
•Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
•If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
•CDC states that wearing face mask will not protect the public from COVID-19. The Office of Inspector General will be placing special emphasis on infection control policies and procedures when inspecting healthcare facilities.
People at Higher Risk for COVID-19 Complications
•Adults over 60 and people who have severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease seem to be at higher risk for more serious COVID-19 illness.
•If you are at increased risk for COVID-19, it is especially important for you to take actions to reduce your risk of exposure. Stay at home as much as possible. Make sure you have access to several weeks of medications and supplies in case you need to stay home for prolonged periods of time. When you go out in public, keep away from others who are sick, limit close contact (6 feet away) and wash your hands often. Avoid crowds.
Refer concerned individuals and healthcare providers to our state website: http://kycovid19.ky.gov
Refer concerned individuals to the COVID-19 Hotline 1-800-722-572