MAYVILLE – The Chautauqua County Department of Health says an 80-year-old man has died as a result of the COVID-19 virus.
Officials say the man, who underwent testing and treatment at a hospital in Erie, died due to complications of the virus.
As of Monday, Chautauqua County has a total of eight confirmed cases of the virus; including the death. The other seven individuals are recovering at home, officials said.
Monday’s numbers are as follows:
- 21 in Mandatory Quarantine (individuals confirmed positive of COVID-19 or a household contact of a confirmed positive COVID-19 case);
- 32 in Precautionary Quarantine (individuals with travel history to CDC level 3 country or proximal contact of a confirmed case of COVID-19);
- 18 in Mandatory Isolation (individuals who are symptomatic of COVID-19 and are pending COVID-19 lab test);
- 98 negative test results to date; and
- 1 death.
Chautauqua County Public Health staff says they perform an intensive investigation to identify close contacts of all confirmed positive cases.
“Following guidance from NYSDOH, contact tracing begins on the day the person with the positive test started having symptoms,” said officials in a press release. “NYSDOH deems this the beginning of the infectious period.”
Once identified, the department says they notify close contacts of those potentially exposed and they are placed under mandatory or precautionary quarantine to monitor for symptoms.
“If you do not personally hear from a public health nurse, you are not a close contact of an individual who has been confirmed to have COVID-19,” furthered officials. “Per NYSDOH, close contact refers to a person who cared for or lived with a person with COVID-19. It does not include activities such as walking by a person or sitting across a waiting room or office for a brief time.”
There continues to be a national shortage of personal protective equipment such as masks and gowns, collection swabs, and viral transport media supplies. As such, officials say it is critical that laboratory testing be prioritized for hospitalized patients and ill health care workers and nursing homes residents.
“PPE must be appropriately utilized by the appropriate people,” said officials. “It is critical that we protect our healthcare workforce.”
Any resident experiencing a fever, with cough or shortness of breath is asked to call their health care provider first for guidance.
“DO NOT show up at their office, Urgent Care, or ER before calling,” expressed officials. “If symptoms are severe and/or you require an ambulance for transport, call 911 and notify the operator of your severe respiratory symptoms.”
Officials also say the COVID-19 outbreak has led to the spread of fear and panic for individuals and communities. In addition to following physical precautions guidelines, they ask resident to take care of their psychological well-being.
The Chautauqua County COVID-19 Response Team meets daily to stay up-to-date on rapidly changing situations. They ask that community members do the following:
- Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds, and wash them more frequently throughout the day;
- Avoid touching your face;
- Cover your coughs or sneezes;
- Avoid close contact with others by keeping a distance of six feet;
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces; and
- Stay home and avoid contact with others if you are sick.
For additional information, residents can call the NYS Coronavirus Hotline at 1-888-364-3065 or Chautauqua County DHHS at 1-866-604-6789.