City ramps up efforts to fight COVID-19

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By Jessie Wagoner

McPHERSON—City officials announced Monday morning they have a new option available for businesses and nonprofits to use in the battle against COVID-19. Mayor Tom Brown acknowledged cases are on the rise, and at least one new cluster has been identified in the community. To assist, the McPherson Fire Department is now offering disinfection assistance for businesses and nonprofits.

We have ability in the McPherson Fire Department to decontaminate,” Brown said. “Through the SPARKS funds, we bought two machines. We won’t do a residential house, but we will do not-for-profits and for-profit businesses.”

If you have a COVID-19 cluster, contact the McPherson County Health Department or Fire Chief TJ Wyssmann to arrange for the disinfection service.

All we ask is that you pay for the chemical used so that we can replace it and keep on going,” Brown said. “Otherwise, we are doing that, the labor is all part of the regular fire department. If we start getting some of those done in McPherson, we will be better off.”

McPherson County has reached a new milestone, passing the 1,000-case mark this week. According to data released Nov. 16 by the McPherson County Health Department, there are 1,063 total cases of COVID-19. Of those, 522 are active cases. There are currently six hospitalizations and eight deaths.

Shalei Shea, director of the McPherson County Health Department, said the large number of cases have pushed her staff and Kansas Department of Health and Envionment staff beyond their limits.

Please continue to grant grace and patience for my office,” Shea said. “I have one nurse working at home while isolating, one nurse working COVID full time and one nurse keeping our clinic going. I am filling the holes as I can, but we are extremely busy, and KDHE is also maxed out. I don’t think this is far from what our local health care system is also experiencing.”

Health professionals throughout the state have asked individuals to avoid large gatherings, social distance, wear a mask and practice good hygiene.