Saline County COVID-19 Update: 126 New Cases, 1,329 Recoveries, Outbreak at Restaurant Under Investigation

SALINA – There are 126 new positive COVID-19 cases in Saline County that have been identified since the Friday, November 13 report, according to a media release from the Saline County Health Department.

The total for the county is now 1,729, with 383 cases that are actively being monitored by the Health Department. The total number of recoveries for Saline County is now at 1,329. The total number in Saline County remains 17. There have been a total of 7,675 negative tests in the county.

Salina Regional Health Center is now reporting that they have 26 hospitalized COVID-19 patients. Salina Regional is a regional hospital and the COVID-19 patient total is not specific to the number of Saline County residents who may be hospitalized.

“Health Department Staff is working through several clusters of positive cases related to a multitude of different events and locations,” Health Department officials said Monday. “As we have seen over the past two weeks, a single case can take an entire day to investigate properly and notify close contacts. With so many new cases each day, our staff is extremely behind in case investigation. Please continue to be patient with our staff, we are working as quickly as we can.”

Anyone who has visited Buffalo Wild Wings, 2580 S. 9th, within the last week and a half is asked to monitor yourself for symptoms of COVID-19. This outbreak has several complicated cases that the Health Department staff has not been unable to trace back to a single contact, thus not having specific dates and times of when exposure could have occurred. If you do develop symptoms, please contact your primary care physician about testing.

A shelter site, at no cost to an individual, is available for those who cannot isolate or quarantine in their homes and who have tested positive for COVID-19, those individuals who have been exposed to someone who has tested positive, and those living and working in at-risk congregate settings. This shelter does provide for housing, meals, laundry, and cleaning service so individuals are provided a safe shelter to avoid exposing their household to the COVID-19 virus and help stop the spread of the virus. For more information or to request this service, please contact your local Emergency Management Department at 785-714-0389 or 785-819-0263 if you need shelter outside of your home.

If you have been tested for COVID-19, you need to isolate in your home until your test results are back. Those that are notified of a positive COVID-19 test you should:

  • Isolate for at minimum 10 days from symptom onset and be 72 hours fever free and have a significant improvement in symptoms.
  • Close Contacts are defined as those persons within 6 feet or less for 10 minutes of more two days before the positive cases’ symptom onset date.
  • Close Contacts need to quarantine for two weeks from their last contact date unless living in the same household, and then it would be two weeks past the positive case’s isolation release date.
  • If after several days, the Health Department has not reached out to a close contact, the Health Department may not have been notified of the contact exposure and you will need to notify the Health Department; but please be patient and continue to quarantine until then.

We’ve been in this pandemic for ten months and as we enter cold and flu season, it is just as important now as it has always been to continue to do the things that we know works to help prevent and slow the spread of COVID-19:

  1. Wash your hands often, for at least 20 seconds with warm soapy water. Use hand sanitizer if you do not have access to soap and water.
  2. Maintain physical distance between yourself and others of at least 6 feet or more.
  3. Wear masks in public spaces as required by City Ordinance and County Resolution. Masks do not prevent you from getting COVID-19, the flu, or other contagious diseases but they do, however, prevent other people from catching certain diseases from you. You must cover your nose and mouth for masks to be effective.
  4. Sanitize frequently touched surfaces and areas such as doorknobs, handles, cell phones, tablets, etc.
  5. Stay home if you are sick. Regardless if you think it may be a cold, it could be allergies, but it also could be something worse.

If you have been tested for COVID-19, you need to isolate in your home until your test results are back. Do not go to work or school, do not allow visitors to enter your house, arrange for delivery of groceries and food, and monitor yourself for symptoms. Those that are notified of a positive COVID-19 test should take the following precautions:

  • If you have severe symptoms, immediately call your primary care provider and follow their directions.
  • Isolate yourself in your home. Isolation means that you should not come in contact with anyone, should not leave your house, and should not allow visitors to enter your house.
  • Make a list of everyone that you had close contact with (10 minutes within 6 feet) starting two days before symptoms appeared; or if not exhibiting symptoms, two days before the date the laboratory test was performed.
  • Keep note of what staff members at the Health Department you speak to. This will make it easier to connect you to the right person should you have additional questions.

According to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, there are now 122,741 cases and 1,266 deaths statewide. This information can be found by clicking or tapping here.

Saline County’s dashboard has been updated to include age ranges of cases in active isolation, recovered, and deceased. This dashboard is updated on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays by 5 p.m.

The Health Department reminds everyone to watch for symptoms of COVID-19, which may vary from person to person and can include:

  • Fever (100.4 degrees or higher)
  • Chills
  • Shaking or exaggerated shivering
  • Muscle pain or muscle ache
  • General discomfort, uneasiness or pain
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • New smell and taste disorders
  • Diarrhea

Here’s what you can do to help stop the spread:

  • Stay home if you’re sick
  • Wear masks in public settings
  • Maximize physical distance (6 feet or more) in public settings
  • Avoid socializing with large groups
  • High-risk individuals should only leave the house for essential needs
    Wash your hands frequently

Only follow official sources to obtain information: www.saline.org/coronavirus or www.kdheks.gov.

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