Columbia/Boone County Public Health and Human Services (PHHS) announced that Boone County has reported its highest single-day increase of COVID-19 cases. 39 new COVID-19 cases were reported as of 4 p.m. Thursday, July 2, 2020.
The rate of Boone County residents testing positive has also increased dramatically, from 0.4% the week of May 1 to 12.2% the week of June 29. PHHS, along with city and county officials, are very concerned about these trends.
"Our contact tracing efforts have quickly become overwhelmed and positivity rates continue to climb," said Director Stephanie Browning. "We are working closely with our city and county partners to implement additional mitigation measures in order to avoid returning to more strict regulations."
Columbia Mayor Brian Treece and the City Council will consider a proposed ordinance Monday, July 6 that would require face masks in public and private settings in which individuals are around people outside of their household members. PHHS strongly supports this ordinance based on updated guidance and evidence-based studies that have shown that wearing facemasks could significantly lower the transmission of COVID-19.
Face masks should be worn in conjunction with other mitigation efforts as an important piece of a layered defense against the virus. This layered approach includes:
- Stay home if you are sick, even if you think you are just experiencing allergies.
- Avoid close contact with others by social distancing from individuals outside of your household. This includes not coming within 6 feet of someone who does not live in your home for more than 15 minutes.
- Keep gatherings small. If someone you were around were to test positive shortly after you were with them, you may need to quarantine.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- Cover coughs and sneezes.
- Contact your primary care physician or local health care system immediately if you begin to experience any symptoms of COVID-19.
- Isolate at home immediately if you have been tested for COVID-19. If you receive a positive result, it may be 48 hours before a member of PHHS can contact you with further instructions.