By Jessie Wagoner
Governor Laura Kelly and officials with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment have recommended that communities not move into Phase Out of “Ad Astra: A Plan to Reopen Kansas,” which was originally planned to begin June 22. As COVID-19 cases continue to rise throughout the state, the new recommendation is to stay in Phase 3 for at least two more weeks.
“Though many Kansans and communities have been social distancing, wearing masks, and working hard over the past few weeks to mitigate the spread of the virus, we have unfortunately seen an increase in disease spread,” Kelly said. “After consulting with Secretary Norman’s team at KDHE, I have decided that our state is not ready to move into the final phase of the ‘Ad Astra’ plan until July 6, 2020, at the earliest.”
As of press time, McPherson County has a total of 49 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Of those cases, 39 have met recovery guidelines set forth by KDHE. Of the 10 active cases in the county, seven are asymptomatic, with exposure at a long-term care facility or to someone in their household. All 10 of the active cases are currently recovering at home.
“McPherson County Health Department recommends McPherson County remains in Phase 3 at least until June 29, 2020,” Shalei Shea, director of the McPherson County Health Department said. “This decision is based off of the current facility investigation, increases in positive cases over the last 14 days, and the recommendation from KDHE.”
Shea says McPherson County residents are encouraged to help slow the spread of coronavirus by:
- Following Phase 3 of reopening Kansas and McPherson County (mcphersoncountyks.us).
- Maintaining social distancing.
- Avoiding gatherings in groups greater than 45 persons.
- Wearing cloth face coverings or homemade masks when in public.
- Practicing cough etiquette and washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
Symptoms for COVID-19 appear two to 14 days after exposure and include fever, cough, shortness of breath, malaise, sore throat, chills and diarrhea. If you develop any of these symptoms, contact your healthcare provider. You must stay home for at least 10 days after
symptoms started or for 72 hours after fever is gone (without the use of fever-reducing medication) and with significant improvement in symptoms, whichever is longer.
If you develop symptoms that may indicate COVID-19, please call your health care provider. If you do not have a provider, please call your local hospital, urgent care or the McPherson County Health Department.