Butler County Health Department resources stretched due to COVID-19

Chad Frey
cfrey@thekansan.com
Butler County Times Gazette

In a statement issued Nov. 10, Butler County officials issued an advisory alerting citizens that local Health Department resources are at capacity due to the number of COVID-19 cases throughout the area.

At the time of the announcement, the county reported 163 active COVID-19 cases. There have been more than 1,330 cases found in the county since the pandemic began. More than 1,120 people have recovered. There have been four deaths in the county.

“Remember to stay home when you are sick, wash your hands, wear masks, and practice social distancing. The steps we take as a community are for our community. The only ones to benefit are ourselves.”

The Butler County Board of Commissioners voted 3-1 during a special meeting on July 2, 2020, to repeal Governor Laura Kelly's Executive Order 20-52 to mandate citizens wear masks in public settings. While that decision has not been reversed, county officials advise the following:

If you have received notification that you tested positive for COVID-19, please isolate for 10 days from symptom onset or, if asymptomatic, your test date. A person who tested positive for COVID-19 will need to be in isolation for at least 10 days.

If you are a household contact (close contact) to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, your quarantine will continue for 14days once the positive person is released from isolation.

If you have been notified that you are a direct contact (close contact) of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, you will need to quarantine for 14 days from your last exposure to the positive contact. Please consult with your local health care provider for evaluation and to determine if testing is recommended.

A close contact is defined as the following:

Lives with the infected person or stayed overnight for at least one night in a house with the infected person.

Had direct contact with infectious secretions of a COVID-19 case (example: being coughed or sneezed on, kissed, contact with a dirty tissue, shared a drinking glass, food, towels, or other personal items).

A person that has participated in practicing or playing contact sports with a positive COVID_19 case. Contact sports involve more than occasional and fleeting contact and include such sports as football, basketball, rugby, hockey, soccer, lacrosse, wrestling, boxing, and martial arts. Other sports may be included if social distancing, mask use, and other mitigation measures are not followed.

A person within six feet of an infected person for 10 consecutive minutes.

If the infected person is coughing, sneezing, singing, shouting, or doing anything else that expels respiratory droplets that carry the virus into the air, or if there is close contact with more than one infected person, a person within10 cumulative minutes in a 24-hour period may be considered a close contact.

A contact in an aircraft sitting within two seats (in any direction) of a person with COVID-19, travel companions or person providing care, and crew members serving in the section of the aircraft where the index case was seated (if severity of symptoms or movement of the case indicate more extensive exposure, passengers seated in the entire section or all passengers on the aircraft may be considered close contacts).

For general COVID-19 questions and to find out Butler County testing locations, please contact 211. Please be advised that services at the Butler County Health Department will be limited during this time.