"Steep" Increase In Teen COVID Cases Noted In Livingston, Oakland & Genesee Counties
August 5, 2020
By Jon King / email@example.com
A “steep increase” in COVID-19 cases among teenagers has been charted in Livingston, Oakland and Genesee counties.
According to a release issued Tuesday by the Oakland County Health Division, Livingston County Health Department and Genesee County Health Department, COVID-19 cases in the South Lyon and Fenton areas have surged since mid-July among individuals 15 – 19 years-old. The release is posted below. Some of the cases reported attending large indoor and outdoor gatherings, including graduation parties and prom-like events, during July.
The statement comes in the wake of an incident in which a Brighton High School student-athlete tested positive for the coronavirus. WHMI contacted BHS Principal Gavin Johnson, and he referred all questions to Athletic Director John Thompson, who confirmed the information. However, in line with privacy rules and protocols, Thompson declined to specify the sport in which the student participates, or whether it would affect Brighton High School fall sports schedules.
Leigh-Anne Stafford, Health Officer for Oakland County, urged parents to take notice of the activities that their kids are attending. “We need parents and young people in our community to recognize the risk they take to their own health and that of their family and friends when attending gatherings without taking precautions.” Livingston County Health Department Director Dianne McCormick added that socializing responsible could help to quickly turn things around. “When attending both indoor and outdoor gatherings, it is important to stay six feet from others and wear a mask.” Genesee County Health Officer John McKellar also urged residents to work with health officials in trying to track down this latest cluster of cases. ‘When individuals cooperate with Health Departments to complete contract tracing and case investigations, it goes a long way to stopping the spread of COVID-19. No one wants to be the one who spreads COVID-19 to someone who becomes very ill or dies.”
The joint release states that preliminary information indicates a significant increase in cases among high school age students in the three counties and that those numbers could change as case investigation continues. In Oakland County, COVID-19 cases among 15 – 19-year-olds in the South Lyon area increased from three cases during late-June to mid-July to 42 from mid-July to early August. Similar trends for this age group have been observed as well in Livingston and Genesee counties. For Livingston County, cases increased from three cases during late-June to mid-July to 19 from mid-July to early August and in Genesee County, cases increased from 19 during late-June to mid-July to 94 from mid-July to early August.
The three health departments are conducting case investigations to identify individuals who have potentially been exposed. Initial information has determined that 15 – 19-year-olds from Oakland, Livingston and Genesee counties attended at least six large gatherings. Health officials are asking that if you attended if you attended a large gathering in the South Lyon and/or Fenton area during mid-to-late July and you think you are developing any of the symptoms of COVID-19 described below, call your physician or local health department.
People with COVID-19 have reported a wide range of symptoms from mild to severe. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
• Fever or chills
• Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
• Muscle or body aches
• New loss of taste or smell
• Sore throat
• Congestion or runny nose
• Nausea or vomiting
If you are considering attending an indoor or outdoor event, take precautions by:
• Maintaining six feet social distance from those outside your household
• Wearing a face covering when you cannot stay six feet from others
• Washing your hands regularly for 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
• Staying home when sick
There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to the virus. The spread of COVID-19 can be reduced with cloth face coverings, social distancing, and staying home when sick except to get medical care.
For more information on COVID-19, for Oakland County visit www.oakgov.com/covid. Contact Nurse on Call at 800-848-5533, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. with health-related questions. For all other COVID-19 questions, contact the COVID-19 Help Hotline at 248-858-1000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. For up-to-date public health information, follow @publichealthOC on Facebook and Twitter. For Livingston County, call 517-546-9850, email: COVID19@livgov.com or visit https://www.livgov.com/health/ph/Pages/COVID19.aspx. For Genesee County call 810-424-4443 or visit www.gchd.us.