June 27, 2020
Media Contact: Delilah McFadden, public health emergency coordinator, Cumberland Plateau Health District, 276-701-7330
HEALTH DEPARTMENT ENCOURAGES VACATIONERS AND EVERYONE TO CONTINUE TO PRACTICE PERSONAL PRECAUTIONS TO PREVENT ILLNESS
(LEBANON, Virginia) — As cases of COVID-19 continue to increase across Virginia, and as we approach one of the most popular holidays of the year, the Virginia Department of Health reminds everyone of the ongoing and critical need to practice good health habits, to limit the spread of illness, everywhere in Virginia. Some localities in southwest Virginia are seeing significant increases, with 13 new cases in Buchanan County in the last 48 hours and two new cases each in Tazewell and Dickenson counties over the same period.
“COVID-19 has seen widespread community transmission across Virginia since March, and each of our 35 health districts has had cases and hospitalizations,” said Sue Cantrell, M.D., director of the health districts. Statewide, there are now more than 61,200 cases, more than 6,100 hospitalizations and more than 1,700 deaths due to COVID-19. Those numbers increase every day.
Larger increases can occur following close gatherings of crowds, travel to COVID-19 hot spots, and simply due to people in close contact in smaller groups and not wearing masks. “We all have a stake in this, for the protection of ourselves and everyone else,” said Dr. Cantrell. “Please wear a face covering when out in public. Avoid close contact in close groups, and stay six feet or more from others. There is no safe place. There is only safe behavior”
Don’t be a victim of COVID fatigue. If you travel, plan your trip to minimize the risk of exposure and illness. Guidelines for protecting yourself and others from COVID-19 are online at www.vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus/coronavirus/travel-to-areas-with-widespread-ongoing-community-spread,
and also include:
- Clean your hands often with soap and water or use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
- Cover coughs and sneezes.
- Pick up food at drive-thru or curbside restaurants, or at stores.
“People are excited to get outside and enjoy the fresh air and sunshine, and rightly so. As we plan to enter Phase Three recovery next week on July 1, it remains important to remember to keep yourself and others safe by following the guidelines that protect us and those around us. Remember that hot spots with high numbers of COVID-19 have popped up at beaches and theme parks. We are so fortunate to live in beautiful southwest Virginia, and now is a great time to explore all of the attractions available to us right here,” said Dr. Cantrell.
Camping, hiking, fishing, biking, motorcycle or horseback riding, or just taking a scenic drive are all great options, provided you follow all guidelines to keep you and others safe. For more information, visit:
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*NOTE: This release has been updated to remove ‘deaths’ from the quote in the second paragraph. As of June 28, 2020, the Cumberland Plateau Health District has not yet reported a COVID-19 death.