One new COVID-19 case in Greene County; testing sites open in Northeast Tennessee

Mike Still • May 27, 2020 at 4:08 PM

Northeast Tennessee added a confirmed COVID-19 case on Wednesday, while Southwest Virginia remained level in the number of both cases and deaths.

The Tennessee Department of Health tracking webpage (www.tn.gov/health/cedep/ncov) reported one new case in Greene County for a countywide total of 48 cases and two deaths during the pandemic.

The TDH adjusted Sullivan County’s case total downward by two, making for 60 cases and two deaths.

Five other counties remained level: Hawkins with 31 confirmed cases and two deaths; Washington with 75 cases and no deaths; Carter with 19 cases and one death; Johnson with 15 cases; and Unicoi with three cases and no deaths.

Statewide, 21,306 cases and 353 deaths were reported as of Wednesday — an increase of 341 and 10, respectively. The total testing rate was 409,630 of 6.83 million state residents or 6%.

Testing rates by county in Northeast Tennessee on Wednesday were:

• Hawkins, 1,497 people or 2.64%

• Sullivan, 4,236 or 2.68%

• Washington, 3,158 or 2.44%

• Johnson, 1,912 or 10.8%

• Carter, 1,321 or 2.34%

• Greene, 2,125 or 3.1%

• Unicoi, 430 or 2.4%

The LENOWISCO Health District remained at 42 confirmed cases and four deaths, according to the Virginia Department of Health (www.vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus). Wise County’s case and death total remained at 24 and two, with Scott County’s totals at seven cases and two deaths. Lee County and Norton, which have not seen any deaths during the pandemic, stood at nine and two cases, respectively.

The VDH’s website did not include testing data by ZIP code areas on Wednesday, so local testing rates by county or city could not be calculated. Across the LENOWISCO district, according to Wednesday’s online data, 1,887 residents of the population of 86,471, or 2.18%, have been tested via nasal swab sample for COVID-19.

Statewide, Virginia reported a pandemic total of 40,249 cases and 1,281 deaths as of Wednesday — increases of 907 and 45, respectively. The statewide testing rate for people with nasal swab and blood tests was 308,153 of 8.63 million or 3.57%. For nasal swab testing only, 275,074 people have been tested to date or 3.19%.

The TDH continues to offer free drive-up COVID-19 testing for residents who feel they need to be tested.

“If you are concerned about your health or the health of a loved one, we will test you,” said Regional Director Rebekah English. “People tested are asked for basic contact information to give them results once they are available. All information is strictly confidential.”

TDH COVID-19 assessment sites in the region are:

• Carter County Health Department: Monday-Friday, 9-11 a.m. — 403 E. G St., Elizabethton

• Greene County Health Department: Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. — 810 Church St., Greeneville

• Hawkins County Health Department: Monday-Friday, 1-3 p.m. — 201 Park Blvd., Rogersville

• Washington County Health Department: Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.- 3 p.m. — 219 Princeton Road, Johnson City

Testing is also available by appointment only at health departments in Hancock, Hawkins/Church Hill, Johnson and Unicoi counties. Please call these health departments for further information or to schedule an appointment.

The Health Department will conduct nasal swab collection for testing for COVID-19. Test results may be available within 72 hours, depending on the volume of tests that the testing lab receives. Those who are ill should first contact their primary care providers.

Additional information about Tennessee’s assessment sites is available for each county on the Tennessee Department of Health website at www.tn.gov/health/cedep/ncov/remote-assessment-sites.html.

Measures one can take to lessen the impact of COVID-19 include:

- Wash your hands often with soap and water (or alcohol-based hand rub) for at least 20 seconds, especially after coughing or sneezing;

- Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands;

- Stay home when you are sick;

- Cover your coughs and sneezes with your arm or a tissue;

- Clean and disinfect objects (e.g., cell phone, computer) and high touch surfaces regularly; and,

- Practice social/physical distancing by staying at least 6 feet away from anyone outside of your household;

- Wear a mask in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.

All Tennesseans, especially those in high-risk populations, should take the following actions to reduce the possibility of getting sick with COVID-19:

- Keep space (at least 6’) between yourself and others;

- Limit your time in public to essential needs only, such as grocery trips, medical care, pharmacy needs or emergencies;

- When you are in public, avoid crowds as much as possible, and keep away from others who are sick, limit close contact and wash your hands often;

- Avoid non-essential travel, especially on airlines and cruise ships; and,

- Stay home as much as possible to reduce your risk of being exposed.

TDH has additional information available at www.tn.gov/health/cedep/ncov.html.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated information and guidance available online at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html