Columbiana under watchful eye after COVID cases spike, health officials say it will get worse

Coronavirus

After National Guard sent in, Columbiana County Health Officials say they are taking all the help they can get.

COLUMBIANA COUNTY, Ohio (WTRF) – As of April 9th, 82 COVID-19 cases and 6 deaths have been confirmed in Columbiana County.

People that tested positive range from 21 to 86. And Ohio’s Governor, Mike DeWine, has recently called in the National Guard to send aid to the federal prison in the county.

These numbers reflect cases in East Liverpool City, Salem City and at the federal prison, where the county’s health informant says the prison has seen many of the cases. In response, Columbiana’s Health Department has changed a lot around.

We’ve put all our efforts towards disease tracking. We brought in some school nurses which has worked really well to try to track all of the contacts of anybody who’s been positive to really keep that disease under control.

Laura Fauss, Public Information Officer for Columbiana County Health District

The Health Official likened this to Groundhog Day, seeing the same busy scene play out day after day.

Every day feels like the same day. I can’t tell you when. It’s been gradually for a month that we’ve increased in cases. It’s been slowly getting higher, and higher.

Laura Fauss, Public Information Officer for Columbiana County Health District

But as the virus ramps up, the Health Department is not taking a break from the frontlines.
Governor DeWine recently sent in the National Gaurd to help contain the spread in the Federal Prison.

We have seen an increase in the number of cases in the prison, and I think that’s important, everyone working in the public health field right now could use some help.

The National Guard coming into the prisons is going to help out the community in general. They don’t have guns for security but they are there specifically for medical backup, medical assistance.

Laura Fauss, Public Information Officer for Columbiana County Health District

With Columbiana bordering Jefferson County, containing this spike has been a month-long fight. But the Health Department says 82 cases is not as extreme as the prediction. None-the-less, this is just the beginning as they expect that number to go up.

We’re not seeing the spike we expected to see, and even though it’s boring at home, we just kind-of need to stay steady there, and wait this out. And I think we see our community doing that, and working well together. And in a scary world, that’s one positive thing we are seeing.

Laura Fauss, Public Information Officer for Columbiana County Health District

Health officials can’t thank the community enough for the donations of face masks and gloves, and are saying keep up the good work as businesses remain closed.


Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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