Effingham County Health Department received notice Thursday of seven new positive cases of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

Positive cases are one male under age 10, one male in his teens, one male in his 40s, one male in his 70s, two females in their 40s and one female in her 70s. All individuals are doing well on isolation and have had no known contact with a COVID-positive case.

Citizens are strongly urged to take steps to minimize risk of contracting COVID-19 by wearing a face covering, washing your hands frequently, maintaining a distance of at least 6 feet, and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces. These precautions should be taken at all times, even if you are traveling. Review travel plans prior to departure. Research the COVID positivity rate of the location where you are traveling. Make plans that decrease your chances of exposure such as curbside or take out eating. For more travel guidance, visit the CDC website https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/travel-in-the-us.html.

Also, as we see an increase in the number of cases within the community, it is important to monitor yourself for COVID symptoms. These symptoms include fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea. If you are exhibiting any of these symptoms, contact your health care provider for further guidance.

Testing is available in the Effingham community for individuals exhibiting symptoms of COVID and for individuals who may not have symptoms but feel they may be at increased risk for contracting COVID disease. Remember, persons may not always exhibit symptoms, and disease spread can be reduced by having early diagnosis and practicing isolation. For information on how to obtain testing, contact the Effingham County Health Department at 217-342-9237 or your health care provider.

The public is asked to follow and share trusted sources of information on COVID-19. Follow the CDC, IDPH and ECHD websites and social media accounts for such trusted information.

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