Mobile County Health Department concerned over increase in COVID-19 cases

Coronavirus

MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — The Alabama Department of Health is reinforcing safer-at-home recommendations, as more than 800 cases of COVID-19 were reported in a single day.

Mobile County is also reporting numbers significantly higher than the average over the past few weeks. 59 cases were reported on Wednesday and 51 on Thursday.

Mobile County Health Department (MCHD) says these new cases are due to community transmission.

Experts with the MCHD are closely watching the numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases, after the increase in Mobile County and across the entire state.

“I know the state health department is very concerned about this steep increase in the number of cases around the state.”

Dr. Rendi Murphree, with the Mobile County Health Department

Dr. Murphree says the increase in cases is due to community transmission.

“We saw a flattening of the curve when we had more restrictions through the health officers safer at home order, but since some of those have been lifted and there are more people moving about the community, it’s no surprise that we are seeing more community transmission.”

Dr. Rendi Murphree, with the Mobile County Health Department

While there is more available testing, the health department says that is not what is driving the increase in confirmed cases, they’ve seen the opposite trend in testing. “Increase in testing capability is not what’s driving our numbers up,” said Dr. Murphree. She continued, “in the last couple of weeks, I’ve seen overall, a reduction in the total number of tests run. Which concerns me because I worry that people think that it’s over.”

But there is some good news. “The number of hospitalizations and deaths have gone down steadily for the last several weeks. That is extremely hopeful and optimistic information,” said Dr. Murphree.

The health department urges people to continue to observe social distancing and other safe practices, like washing hands and wearing a mask in public.

“I think it’s maybe just to sort of adjust your mindset that this is going to be a new normal for us,” said Dr. Murphree. She continued, “things will be different and we will have to adjust and accept things like 14 day quarantine if we are exposed to someone who had COVID. And going in and out of restriction, we can lift it for a little while, but if we see that cases are going up, we may have to reinforce some of the tougher restrictions. We need everyone’s help to keep our community safe.”

The MCHD is testing anyone who thinks they need to get a COVID test at all of their eight locations across the county, at no cost to the patient.

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