The Quad Cities is entering week three of an increase in COVID-19 cases.
According to Nita Ludwig, Administrator for the Rock Island County Health Department, each county was averaging fewer than six or seven COVID-19 cases daily.
“We are now experiencing daily totals of upwards of 28 in Rock Island County and 40 to 45 in Scott,” said Ludwig during a press briefing Tuesday. “This trend is serious. This trend is dangerous. And this trend does not appear to be ending anytime soon.”
Ludwig says, while a majority of the health department’s recent cases have been younger individuals — those around age 30 and younger — they don’t expect this to be the case long-term.
“As we know, younger individuals socialize with friends, visit their family members — including grandparents and other older relatives — and work in a variety of settings — including restaurants and other hospitality settings — that are frequented by individuals of all ages.”
Ludwig adds that young individuals who may not show symptoms of COVID-19 could unknowingly be spreading it to any of the individuals mentioned above.
“This unintentional spread is becoming very real as our case numbers continue to rise,” said Ludwig.
Ludwig says a natural consequence of a surge in positive COVID-19 cases is an increase in hospitalizations.
“This typically happens eight to 10 days after an increase in cases, and we fully expect this to be the case in our community,” said Ludwig. “A natural consequence to an increase in hospitalizations is the potential for COVID-19-related deaths. The public health and healthcare communities are doing everything we can to prevent both of these outcomes.”
Scott County Health Department’s Director Ed Rivers says, “Our efforts mean nothing unless we have the support of the community. We need your help now more than ever.”
Rivers says the following simple actions can be done every day to protect those most vulnerable in the community:
- Make careful decisions when going out. “It would be great to get together with your former college crew at a popular restaurant dinner. It’s annoying to have to cancel those types of gatherings if you can’t social distance,” says Rivers. “But cancel them anyway.”
- Think carefully about who you put at risk. “Grandparents, family members or friends with health conditions like asthma are all more likely to get seriously ill if the virus spreads to them,” says Rivers.
- Wear a face covering to reduce the likelihood that you will unknowingly spread the virus to others. “Wearing a mask is inconvenient. It is not 100% effective at keeping you from spreading illness if you’re sick and don’t know it,” says Rivers. “But studies show it’s safer than not wearing one. So wear one anyway.”
- STAY HOME if you’ve been told you’re a contact to a positive COVID-19 case. “It’s inconvenient to stay home, even if you don’t have symptoms. 14 days is a long time to stay home when you feel like your normal, healthy self. STAY HOME ANYWAY,” says Rivers. “You could be saving the life of someone else who might not survive if they get the virus from you.”
More information about coronavirus is available at the following links: