As testing for COVID-19 continues to increase, numbers are expected to increase and Polk County is no exception to that general consensus.
Friday figures increased from one to three in a single day - the second reported with a noon update, and a third with the evening - as the Georgia Department of Health released new numbers with their second update of the day.
Officials expect those numbers to rise in the days to come as physicians locally determine who coming to them needs to be tested immediately, and who might need to self quarantine for the time being.
The first case - a woman employed at Meggitt in Rockmart - was previously reported last week. Health officials were unable to provide additional details about the second and third patients tested and found to be positive today.
Around the area, Paulding County also had three cases, Floyd had seven, and Bartow had 54 cases reported thus far. Statewide the number was up to 485, with 14 deaths reported including one in Floyd County.
Local and state health officials are urging people to follow the guidelines established for battling COVID-19 by the Presidential commission.
Those are listed as follows, provided by the Georgia Department of Public Health website:
The White House has released the following guidelines on March 16, 2020:
- Listen to and follow the directions of your state and local authorities.
- If you feel sick, stay home. Do not go to work. Contact your medical provider.
- If your children are sick, keep them at home. Do not send them to school. Contact your medical provider.*
- If someone in your household has tested positive for the coronavirus, keep the entire household at home. Do not go to work. Do not go to school. Contact your medical provider.
- If you are an older person, stay home and away from other people.**
- If you are a person with a serious underlying health condition that can put you at increased risk (for example, a condition that impairs your lung or heart function or weakens your immune system), stay home and away from other people.
- Even if you are young, or otherwise healthy, you are at risk and your activities can increase the risk for others. It is critical that you do your part to stop the spread of the coronavirus:
- Work or engage in schooling from home whenever possible.
- If you work in a critical infrastructure industry, as defined by the Department of Homeland Security, such as healthcare services and pharmaceutical and food supply, you have a special responsibility to maintain your normal work schedule. You and your employers should follow CDC guidance to protect your health at work.
- Avoid social gatherings in groups of more than 10 people.***
- Avoid eating or drinking in bars, restaurants, and food courts – use drive-thru, pickup, or delivery options.
- Avoid discretionary travel, shopping trips, and social visits.
- Do not visit nursing homes or retirement or long-term care facilities unless to provide critical assistance.
- Practice good hygiene:
- Wash your hands, especially after touching any frequently used item or surface.
- Avoid touching your face.
- Sneeze or cough into a tissue, or the inside of your elbow.
- Disinfect frequently used items and surfaces as much as possible.