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13 New COVID-19 Cases Reported In Chautauqua County

Thirteen new cases of COVID-19 within Chautauqua County were reported Tuesday. The new cases, according to the county Health Department, involve a pediatric case, a girl in her teens, a woman in her 60s, a woman in her 30s and nine women in their 20s.

There remains 17 active cases, an increase of 11 reported Monday.

In addition, 166 county residents remain under quarantine/isolation orders from local health officials. Not all of those being monitored are confirmed to have COVID-19 but have either shown symptoms, are awaiting results or have risk factors;

The county Health Department reported 126 recoveries to date in addition to 150 total confirmed cases, seven deaths, 17,259 negative test results. No one with the virus is hospitalized.

“The (county Health Department) encourages you to make good choices,” the department said in its daily update. “There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). That means it is up to all of us to prevent illness by avoiding exposure to the virus.”

COVID-19 is believed to spread mainly from person-to-person:

¯ between people who are in close contact with one another (within 6 feet) for 10 minutes or longer or who have had physical contact through touching, shaking hands, hugging, etc.;

¯ through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks;

¯ droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or be inhaled into the lungs; and

¯ by people who are not showing symptoms.

“If you think you can’t get COVID-19, you are wrong,” said Christine Schuyler, Chautauqua County Public Health director. “If you make good choices, you minimize your risk of getting the virus; you also minimize the risk of passing the virus on to others if you do get it. Please use common sense and good judgement.”

Dr. Lillian Vitanza Ney, retired cardiologist and a member of the Chautauqua County Board of Health, called the caseload “very disturbing.”

“I have worries that more may well be in store for us,” Ney said, referencing the youth that were confirmed positive.

“What we have learned in our experience with COVID is that patients who are younger do have less serious illness, less hospitalizations and less ICU admissions,” she said. “However, and this is important to convey to our youth, there is evidence that the youth are not protected from serious complications including death.”

What is even scarier, Ney said, is that 30% to 40% of the individuals who have the virus show no symptoms. COVID have no symptoms.

“So, they can carry and give the disease to others without knowing they are COVID carriers, and certainly without anyone else knowing it,” she said. “This is what we have to worry about, since the disease can then spread to family members, friends and the greater community, some of which are vulnerable to more serious disease. Among the vulnerable are older individuals, those with medical illness, called co-morbidities, the immune compromised, and those with a specific susceptibility. We learn something new every day about COVID-19, as scientific studies are peer reviewed and published. What is very clear is that this disease has many manifestations, can involve many organs, not just the respiratory tract, and can demonstrate many and varied symptoms, some of which are atypical.”

The resurgence, she believes, is due to those who are beginning to “let their guard down” with regard to mitigation efforts.

“After being cooped up with a lock-down for a few months, are eager to escape, mingle with others and enjoy what summer usually brings,” she said. “It has been difficult to instill the seriousness of this disease, and maybe until it strikes down someone close to us, we don’t give it enough credence. But the evidence is in and we know what we have to do.”

Most of that revolves around the use of a mask or face cloth.

“Wear a mask when out in public, social distance at least 6 feet, hopefully more, and continue to practice good hand hygiene,” Ney said. “The mask that others wear will protect us if they are transmitting the disease, and our mask will protect others around us if we carry the virus.”

She added, “Chautauqua County needs to keep COVID under control, and everyone needs to do their part.”

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