Daily positives skyrocket, 61 cases reported in July so far

UPDATE (4:10 p.m. on July 14):

We have received confirmation of an additional 10 cases in Harlan County, bringing the total to 86 positives recorded since May. Of the 86, there are 57 active cases.

Judge-Executive Dan Mosley said more than 225 people are in quarantine as a result of the community spread and contact tracing throughout the Dayhoit, Tremont, Wallins and Coldiron areas in a Facebook update.

Mosley said more information regarding age, gender and condition will be released at a later time.

ORIGINAL (12:30 p.m. on July 14):

During a press conference Monday evening, Judge-Executive Dan Mosley expressed his concern for a large spike in summer cases for the first half of July, noting 51 COVID-19 cases have been reported since the start of the month.

Of the total 76 cases since the county’s first positive in May, there are 46 active cases, 27 recovered and three deaths associated with the virus.

The 46 active cases include a 60-year-old female (asymptomatic), 39-year-old male (symptomatic), 61-year-old male (asymptomatic), 62-year-old male (symptomatic), 23-year-old female (symptomatic), 55-year-old female (symptomatic), 55-year-old female (asymptomatic), 77-year-old male (symptomatic),  55-year-old female (symptomatic),  27-year-old male (asymptomatic), 73-year-old female (asymptomatic), 61-year-old female (symptomatic), 55-year-old female (symptomatic), 72-year-old female (symptomatic),  46-year-old female (symptomatic), 28-year-old female (quarantined), 56-year-old male (symptomatic), 87-year-old male (asymptomatic), 69-year-old male (asymptomatic), 36-year-old male (symptomatic), 55-year-old female (symptomatic), 45-year-old female (symptomatic), 18-year-old male (asymptomatic), 24-year-old male (symptomatic), 21-year-old female (symptomatic), 30-year-old female (symptomatic), 47-year-old male (symptomatic), 62-year-old male (symptomatic), 47-year-old female (symptomatic), 48-year-old female (symptomatic), 18-year-old female (quarantined), 65-year-old male (symptomatic), 28-year-old male (symptomatic), 29-year-old female (asymptomatic), 23-year-old female (symptomatic), 16-year-old male (quarantined), 20-year-old male (quarantined), 17-year-old male (symptomatic), 53-year-old female (asymptomatic), 11-year-old female (symptomatic), 37-year-old female (symptomatic), 46-year-old male (symptomatic), 62-year-old male (symptomatic), 68-year-old male (symptomatic), 67-year-old male (symptomatic) and 32-year-old female (symptomatic).

All of the active cases, whether they are symptomatic or asymptomatic, have been quarantined.

Mosley said 31 of the 47 cases are connected to community spread in the Dayhoit, Tremont, Wallins and Coldiron areas. Many other active cases are connected to out-of-state travel.

“A week ago, I shared with you that I was still fearful of community spread of COVID-19 in Harlan County, but we had made great progress by eliminating the spread in the Tri-City area,” he said. “It took about four to five weeks to get the job done in that area and cooperation from a lot of folks, but it was done. That makes me proud because I know we are that strong in this county and we care for our families and our neighbors.”

Mosley said we must make that same progress again by eliminating community spread in the Dayhoit, Tremont, Wallins and Coldiron communities.

He is encouraging locals to monitor for symptoms of COVID-19, such as fever, cough and loss of taste and/or smell.

“If we have those symptoms, we need to call our health care provider about getting tested or what level of care we need. If you are sick, please stay home,” he said.

As of 5:30 p.m. on July 13:

  • 2,343 tests have been conducted in Harlan County.
  • 2,262 of these tests have been conducted on Harlan County residents.
  • 58 tests have been conducted on people from other counties.
  • 23 tests have been conducted on people from other states.
  • 2,175 tests have been negative.
  • 93 tests are currently pending.

Mosley said 8.1 percent of the county’s population has been tested, with 3.3 percent testing positive. In the last week, however, 11 percent who have been tested have tested positive for COVID-19.

“This is incredibly high and a lot higher than even the national average or state average,” he said.

A mask mandate is also in effect by Gov. Andy Beshear. Mosley said if anyone needs a mask, call his office at 606-573-2600 and “we will gladly mail you one.”

To report non-compliance of COVID-19 restrictions and guidelines, Mosley said to call the Health Department in Harlan at 606-573-4820.

Mosley commends locals throughout Harlan County for their diligent work toward flattening the curve and stopping the spread of COVID-19, including the Harlan County Health Department and other first responders.

If you were a close contact of any of the positive cases, the Health Department will reach out to you directly as part of its contact tracing and will instruct you on what measures are necessary to protect you and your family.