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Seventh case of COVID-19 confirmed in Howard County

Numbers expected to rise with more than 100 tests pending

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Howard County Commissioner Paul Wyman and Kokomo Mayor Tyler Moore confirmed during a joint live steam today that another case of COVID-19 has been confirmed locally, bringing the total to seven cases.

In addition, two other Hoosiers have tested positive for COVID-19 who work in Howard County but live in different counties. The number of cases, they said, was likely to rise as more than 100 tests were pending results. 

“These are tests that were taken well over a week ago, or at least a week ago. Those results are just coming in … We may still see a spike toward the end of the week, with the national average (of positive tests being) at 13 to 14 percent,” said Wyman. 

That could amount to around 15 more positive cases of the virus coming in by the end of the week. 

An important aspect both Wyman and Moore stressed throughout their address was that citizens should adhere to the orange travel restriction and stay home unless they needed to partake in essential travel. Essential travel included driving to work, so long as that’s at a business deemed essential or traveling for necessities such as for food or doctor visits. 

The county has been at an orange travel advisory since last Friday, and this week Gov. Eric Holcomb moved the entire state to the same restriction. The purpose of the restriction was to deter the spread of the virus, and the only way to do that was to limit social contact and its transmission, according to government officials.  

“At this point, Howard County is orange and will remain an orange … Please try to stay home,” said Moore. 

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The government officials also addressed rumors relating to the pandemic. Chiefly, the officials addressed the rumor that the county would be switching to a red restriction. That, they said, wasn’t likely to happen unless a drastic spike in cases occurred. Such a decision was not in the works currently. 

Secondly, Wyman said the National Guard wasn’t going to be taking over the city. 

“The National Guard is not showing up tomorrow at noon to take over the city of Kokomo, let alone Howard County,” said Wyman. 

The governor did, they said, activate the National Guard to assist from a medical standpoint. 

Also, younger individuals should continue to adhere to the restrictions. The virus, noted the government officials, still can impact those who are younger, and Wyman and Moore drove that point home by relaying the fact that a 3-week-old infant contracted the virus in New Jersey. 

In their address, Wyman and Tyler also walked individuals through the proper process if they believed they had symptoms of COVID-19. They were encouraged to call their medical provider. If they don’t have one, they should reach out to a local hospital. At that point, further directions will be given by the medical provider. People should not visit a doctor in person until they’ve received directions. All initial contact, they said, should be made by phone to limit potential exposure.