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Chippewa County Health Department and War Memorial Hospital Offer COVID-19 Update

Chippewa County Health Department and War Memorial Hospital Offer COVID-19 Update

SAULT STE MARIE, MICHIGAN ~~~~~  November 11, 2020  (LSN)  As COVID-19 cases drastically increase in Chippewa County, the local hospital and health department ask residents to take precautions to slow community spread of the novel virus. “As we experience a surge in our area, we want everyone to take the necessary precautions. Wear a mask, social distance and practice proper hand hygiene” said David Jahn, CEO of War Memorial Hospital (WMH).  Across the river from Sault Ste Marie, Ontario

On October 10, 2020, the case count for Chippewa County was 95. As of November 10, 2020, the case count was 404. This is an average increase of 10 new cases per day. “With the significant increase in cases, it has become more difficult to rapidly contact everyone who has tested positive or who is considered a close contact of a positive case,” said Karen Senkus, Health Officer for Chippewa County Health Department (CCHD).

WMH and CCHD are urging community members who test positive for COVID-19 to complete an isolation period of 10 days, regardless of if they are contacted by health officials. Positive individuals should remain in isolation until all of the following conditions are met:

  •  10 days from onset of symptoms (or from positive test result)
  •  Fever-free for 24 hours, and
  •  Symptoms have improved

COVID-19 positive individuals are asked to contact their close contacts to alert them of the exposure. Due to the overwhelming number of cases, there may be a delay from CCHD staff in contacting a positive individual’s close contacts.

If a person is identified as a close contact, they should quarantine for 14 days post-exposure. Close contacts are defined as:

  •  Those who were with the COVID-19-positive individual while contagious (while symptomatic or up to two days before symptoms began, or the individual received a positive test if asymptomatic), AND
  •  Those who spent 15 or more minutes over the course of 24 hours within six feet of the COVID-19- positive person.

Isolation and quarantine mean staying home from work (and away from other household members as much as possible), school, social gatherings, extracurricular activities and any other public place except when seeking medical care. Avoiding crowds, limiting time with others not from the same household, wearing a mask in public, and following good hygiene practices may prevent local health facilities from becoming overwhelmed.

The State of Michigan has a COVID-19 hotline, available Monday-Friday 8:00-5:00 by calling 1-888-535- 6136. If you believe your symptoms are life threatening, call 911.

For the latest information from CCHD & WMH on the COVID-19 pandemic,
visit our  webpages or


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