MAYVILLE – Chautauqua County Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Unit, was notified Monday afternoon of two residents of Chautauqua County who have tested positive for COVID-19, a disease caused by a novel coronavirus.
The cases were confirmed through testing at the ACL laboratories and are the first confirmed cases in Chautauqua County.
The two individuals diagnosed with COVID-19 include:
- A female in her 30s who resides in the Dunkirk area, with recent travel to the City of Buffalo.
- A male in his 30s who resides in the Silver Creek area, with recent travel to the City of Buffalo.
Based on an initial review of each case by Health Department epidemiology staff, the individuals appear to have had separate exposures to the virus.
Both have been in precautionary quarantine by the Health Department and neither has required hospitalization. health officials say each will continue to recover at home under mandatory isolation, per New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) guidelines.
In addition, 42 people are in quarantine and are being monitored.
In response to the confirmation of two cases, County Executive PJ Wendel said that the County’s COVID-19 Response Team has been preparing for this moment.
“We knew that it was inevitable that the virus would be confirmed in Chautauqua County,” said Wendel. “Everyone must be vigilant in supporting social distancing and respiratory hygiene measures, which are urgent and necessary to slow the spread of COVID-19.
“This confirmation is not a surprise, as we have assumed that the coronavirus was circulating here, and I fully expect to see more positive cases,” said county health commissioner Christine Schuyler. “Our goal is to identify new cases as quickly as we can and prevent or limit secondary exposures to ensure public health and safety.”
Chautauqua County Public Health staff members have also begun an intensive investigation to identify close contacts of these two (2) individuals. Once identified, our department will notify the close contacts of their potential exposure to COVID-19 and they will be placed under mandatory quarantine to monitor for symptoms.
They also not that there is a national shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE), collection swabs, and viral transport media supplies and it is critical that laboratory testing be prioritized for hospitalized patients and the very sick.
The health department says that any resident experiencing a fever, with cough or shortness of breath should call your health care provider first for guidance and do not show up at their office, Urgent Care, or ER before calling. Only if your symptoms are severe should you call 911 and the 911 dispatcher will screen your call per established protocol.
The county says it will continue monitoring the situation and will update the public on a regular basis. Visit https://chqgov.com or https://www.facebook.com/myhealthycounty/ or call 1-866-604-6789 for more information.
County health officials also ask the public to please take action to protect yourself, your family, and fellow residents:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash can. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- Put distance between yourself and others: abide by social distancing measures and maintain 6 feet of separation from those you must be in close contact with.
- Get a flu shot for yourself and your family members at a local pharmacy. This will not prevent COVID-19 but it will prevent you from getting flu, keeping you healthy and out of the hospital.
Individuals with questions or concerns regarding Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) or travel related questions are encouraged to call the New York State Department of Health Coronavirus Hotline 24/7 at 1-888-364-3065.
For locally-specific information, County residents may also contact the Chautauqua County Department of Health and Human Services at 1-866-604-6789 during normal business hours.
To follow the most current information on COVID-19, please visit the County, CDC or NYSDOH webpages at: