Monroe, Ralls counties warn of gatherings with possible COVID-19 exposure

Posted: Jul. 31, 2020 8:20 pm Updated: Aug. 1, 2020 12:03 am

PARIS, Mo. -- Four more COVID-19 cases were reported Friday morning by the Monroe County Health Department.

Neighboring Ralls Country reported 20 cases as of Friday -- two were reported Thursday.

The case count in Monroe County is 16, including six active cases, said Paula Delaney, director of the Monroe County Health Department. She said none of the new cases appears to be travel related.

Delaney said department staff tracers are determining who may have been exposed to the COVID-19 virus by those who were reported positive overnight.

"As soon as we were notified by the state this morning (Friday), we started contacting the affected people and began contact tracing," Delaney said. "We are not here 24/7, but as soon as the state makes contact, our work begins."

Delaney said that the Health Department learned Friday afternoon that one of the new positive cases is a person who visited Pleasant Green Baptist Church near Madison on Sunday for morning services. Direct contacts were unable to be identified during tracing.

"If you were at Pleasant Green Baptist Church for Sunday morning services on Sunday, July 26, 2020, please monitor for symptoms until Aug. 9, 2020," she said. "It is important to remember that anyone you come into contact with could be a potential carrier. Please take preventive measures at all times to help reduce the risk of contracting the virus."

Delaney said that contact tracers try to determine where those who test positive have been over the last two days.

"We are asking where they have been to within 6 feet of someone else for at least 15 minutes," Delaney said.

She said that when contact tracers find people who may have been exposed, they recommend an immediate quarantine of 14 days.

"There is no need to rush out and be tested because that can lead to negative results that can give a false sense of security," she said. "They need to quarantine and watch out for symptoms of the virus."

The Ralls County Health Department warned of possible COVID-19 exposure at three community events:

Center Park Days on July 24 and 25.

Field 4 at the Bear Creek Ball Fields from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. July 25.

A funeral visitation on Monday and funeral service on Tuesday at James O'Donnell Funeral Home.

Clark County also reported an additional two cases, bringing the county's total to 15. The infected people are isolated and recovering at home.