Tuesday, March 17, 2020

COVID-19: Third Case Confirmed in Shelby County

Posted By on Tue, Mar 17, 2020 at 2:54 PM


A third case of COVID-19 has been confirmed in Shelby County, according to the Shelby County Health Department.

Alisa Haushalter, director of the county health department, said Tuesday that this case is not connected to the first two in the county.

The third individual is said to have traveled “extensively” in the United States and returned to Shelby County as they were becoming ill. Haulshalter said this means they did not contract COVID-19 in the county.

Haushalter said it’s not clear at the time where the third patient has been or who they’ve had contact with. The department is currently looking for individuals who may have come into contact with the patient and will share more information about that Wednesday.

The number of confirmed cases is up to 73 across the state, the majority of those concentrated in Middle Tennessee.

Currently, 144 individuals in Shelby County are under some form of public health monitoring. That includes those who are self-monitoring and who are under quarantine.

Haulshalter said the county and city are working with the University of Tennessee to create a pilot site to perform expedited testing locally. The goal is to open by the end of this week.

However, Haulshalter said she is unable to say how many tests will be available, “but what we can say is every day we are working toward having more tests and there’s a variety of ways people will be able to get tested in the future, but I can’t give exact numbers at this time."

County health officials maintain that there is still no evidence of community transmission in the county at this time, but determining where all the third patient went in the county, “could change that equation.”

“Additionally, as soon as we have cases that we can’t link to the first or second case, then we will say we are moving more toward community transmission,” Haulshalter. “The thing that is really important and a strength of Shelby County is early case finding.”

Haulshalter said at this time, a shut-down of bars and restaurants in the county does not seem necessary, but as the Center for Disease and Control and Prevention has recommended, people should still avoid congregating in spaces with 10 or more people.

“So that means limiting going into restaurants and bars,” she said. “There may be a point in the near future where there is a recommendation to close if we have community transmission or if the governor decides the measures need to be spread across the state.”      

Find more up-to-date information about COVID-19 here.

Tags: , ,

Keep the Flyer Free!

Always independent, always free (never a paywall),
the Memphis Flyer is your source for the best in local news and information.

Now we want to expand and enhance our work.
That's why we're asking you to join us as a Frequent Flyer member.

You'll get membership perks (find out more about those here) and help us continue to deliver the independent journalism you've come to expect.



Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment


Readers also liked…

Most Commented On

© 1996-2020

Contemporary Media
65 Union, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation