Coronavirus

An illustration of coronaviruses morphology created by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

According to Three Rivers Public Health Department’s COVID-19 Community Risk Dial, which is updated weekly, Washington County's risk of spread is currently moderate.

The risk for the entire health district, which includes Washington, Dodge and Saunders counties, is also moderate.

Three Rivers risk dials, which include one for each county and one for the entire district, includes low, moderate, high and severe risk of COVID-19 spread. Some guidelines for moderate risk include social distancing, staying home most of the time, cautious expansion of interactions with others, hand washing, enhanced disinfecting and face coverings when unable to social distance.

The dial and detailed guidelines for each risk level are available at threeriverspublichealth.org under the coronavirus updates tab.

The risk dial guidance does not replace any federal, state or local directed health measures. Some of the objective measures that go into deciding the risk level include positivity rate, COVID-19 inpatients in the hospital and on ventilators, cases considered community spread, testing, ability to contract trace in 48 hours and number of new cases.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Washington County had 77 cases of the coronavirus. Since July 4, Washington County has seen its total increase by 27 cases. According to the health department's COVID-19 dashboard, people ages 20 to 29 represent the age group with the most cases. Eighteen people in that age group have tested positive.

There are 915 total cases in Three Rivers jurisdiction, as of Wednesday afternoon. There were 732 cases in Dodge County and 106 in Saunders County.

Local hospitals reported 260 medical beds were available and 82 patients were hospitalized with COVID-19 as of Wednesday afternoon. Of the 363 ventilators available to area hospitals, 128 were in use, including eight for confirmed COVID-19 patients.

COVID-19 can be spread by people even if they don't feel that sick. It also stated the disease can pass to someone else before symptoms begin, and even if symptoms never develop.

"Please stay home if you are sick or if you have been around someone who is COVID-19 positive — this will help us contain the spread of COVID-19," said Terra Uhing, executive director of Three Rivers Public Health Department.

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