First Confirmed Case of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Emporia

March 28, 2020

Media Contact: Tara Rose,

        First Confirmed Case of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Emporia

(Emporia, Virginia)- The Crater Health District (CHD) announced today a resident of the city of Emporia has tested positive for coronavirus 19 (COVID-19).   This marks the first positive COVID-19 case in the city of Emporia.  The individual is a male in his 30s and is self –isolating at home.

“As testing availability increases in our localities and across the Commonwealth, we expect to continue to have confirmed cases,” said Crater Health District Director Alton Hart, Jr., MD, MPH.  We continue to recommend effective measures to keep Crater Health District residents safe and well. It is important for everyone to continue practicing personal public health precautions, especially social distancing and hand and surface hygiene. These are the most effective ways to minimize the spread of illness and keep yourself and those around you healthy.”

“People at higher risk of infection with COVID-19 include: people who are close contacts of someone known to have COVID-19, for example healthcare workers, or household members. Others at higher risk for infection are those who live in or have recently been in an area with ongoing spread of COVID-19,”said Epidemiologist Senior E. Katrina Saphrey, MPH

To lower the risk from spreading respiratory germs, including COVID-19, the Virginia Department of Health’s Crater Health District encourages the following effective behaviors:

  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer only if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Avoid contact with sick people.
  • Practice social distancing. Maintain at least six feet of space between yourself and other individuals when out in public.
  • Avoid crowds of more than 10 people.

The Virginia Department of Health has also activated a public information line, 877-ASK-VDH3, which is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Crater Health District has also activated coronavirus call center, staffed Monday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. to address questions from residents. Community members may call 804-862-8989.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit the following websites: or


NOTE: This case is not yet included on the statewide count on the VDH website. Cases are updated daily at, with the numbers as of 5 p.m. the evening before.