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Known coronavirus cases in McDowell rose to 34 with an additional positive test announced Wednesday afternoon.

The McDowell County Health Department has been notified that one additional McDowell County resident has tested positive for novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

The initial investigation reveals the source of transmission to be unknown.

Public health staff have already initiated an investigation and will be identifying close contacts to contain the spread of disease. To protect individual privacy, no further information about the case will be released.

This brings the total number of positives to 34 in McDowell County. There have been 738 people tested, 610 negative results and 94 tests are pending results. Currently, there are five individuals in quarantine, 28 out of quarantine and one death.

The McDowell County Health Department and McDowell County Emergency Management will keep the public informed by announcing any additional cases that may arise through our local media partners.

It is important for the community to understand that the identification of additional cases does not change our local strategies for preventing and reducing the spread of disease.

“Because we are continuing to get positive results, we know that community transmission is ongoing,” stated Public Health Director Karen Powell.“I highly encourage you to stay vigilant in social distancing, good hygiene and using protective measures to keep ourselves safe. We must see the numbers go down in order to assure that the public is safe and transmission chances are low. We cannot lose focus of this serious situation, which is to stop the transmission of COVID-19 and to save lives. Your Public Health team is dedicated and committed to keeping you safe and protecting the community. McDowell County is strong, and we will get through these unprecedented times.”

The Health Department is continuing to test individuals for COVID-19. If an individual would like to be tested, they can call the hotline at (828) 527- 6687. The operator will ask a list of questions and will provide the caller with the appropriate instructions based upon the answers given. The hours of operation for this hotline are 8AM – 8PM, 7 days per week. If you are having a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 and inform the dispatcher that you have symptoms of COVID-19.

Citizens can utilize an online COVID-19 screening tool by going to mcdowell.clearstep.health and completing the assessment.

For additional information about Foothills Health District or other community resources and health related data, please call our offices, Rutherford Co. (828) 287-6100, McDowell (828) 652-6811, or visit our website at http://www.foothillshd.org/

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