COVID-19 Update From Macon Health Department

November 12, 2020

(Macon County, MO) – Macon County COVID-19 cases have been surging these past few weeks. As of last night, the county is at 154 active cases – this is up from an average of 30 or less active cases during October. The health department is receiving positive cases at a rate between 15 to 25 daily these past two weeks. COVID-19 illnesses range from mild (sinus congestion, stomach ache, fever) to more severe (body aches, loss of sense of taste and smell) to critical hospitalizations (low oxygen levels, respiratory failure, blood clots).

We are sad to announce yet another death where COVID-19 was a factor, bringing the county’s death count to 7 (6 in the six weeks).

Given the surge in cases, Macon County Health Department has made changes in our notification processes. We have dedicated more people to contact tracing and notification efforts by bringing on one part time staff member to full time; pulling in volunteers to help some evenings and weekends; and, dedicating other staff to contact tracing efforts in lieu of their normal job functions. We are altering our clinics schedules to accommodate this shift in duties. We have had 3 people working daily on contact tracing seven days a week, morning to night, and are in the process of hiring a full time LPN to support case investigation efforts.

Our mandate from DHSS is to contact COVID-19 positive people 21 years and younger within 24 hours to begin their investigations. Due to that mandate, some adults will not be contacted immediately upon testing positive. We ask that if you receive notification from your primary care provider or test site that you are positive, that you self-isolate away from household members as much as possible until we can contact you. During this surge, our goal is to make contact with you within two-to-three days of testing positive and then again as you are released from isolation. Those whose illness take a turn for the worse we ask that you contact your primary care provider or emergency room for guidance.

Those who have been contacted and asked to self-quarantine, our goal is to send a letter outlining quarantine dates and instructions for self-quarantine. We are no longer able to contact those on quarantine on a regular basis as in the past, so ask that if you have questions or concerns to contact the health department.