(RILEY COUNTY, KS – September 4, 2020) Riley County has 129 new positive cases and 42 recoveries since Wednesday’s report. A total of 113, or 88%, of the new positive patients are in the 18-24 age range.
Ascension Via Christi Hospital in Manhattan is caring for 3 positive patients at this time. The patients have symptoms severe enough to require hospitalization.
Two additional outbreaks have been declared in Riley County, one at Homestead Assisted Living Facility and the other at the Theta Xi fraternity. Residents and staff members at the assisted living facility have been tested and additional results are pending. One resident of the facility died in a Topeka hospital earlier this week after testing positive. The Homestead has been following guidelines issued by the American Health Care Association and suspended all non-essential visitation, including loved ones, earlier this year.
All residents of Greek houses where outbreaks have been declared should complete a quarantine period. Residents of the Theta Xi fraternity should begin the 14-day quarantine starting today. They can choose to complete the quarantine at the house or at their permanent residence, but they should not go to work, participate in social activities, or attend in-person classes.
Event permits for all Greek houses in Manhattan have been revoked and no new permits will be issued to them in September due to an increase of COVID-19 outbreaks associated with fraternities and sororities, as well as increased cases among Riley County adults aged 18-24. No events may take place at these locations during the month of September.
“It is no longer deemed safe for Greek houses to host events and they may not take place,” said Local Health Officer Julie Gibbs. “Reducing the exposure opportunities from social contact is imperative for the 18-24 age group.”
At least eight classrooms, or “units” at seven Riley County daycare facilities have been closed due to positive staff members, all of them in the 18-24 age range. A few of the facilities have made the choice to close completely. Each classroom or “unit” holds roughly 10 children. All of the kids and staff who have been identified as close contacts of the positive staff members should complete a 14-day quarantine.
Children who have been identified as close contacts as part of a daycare exposure may not be admitted to other daycare facilities until their quarantine period is complete. No childcare facilities have been declared outbreaks at this point.
K-State shared information about safety practices for students who choose to interact socially during the pandemic. Advice includes reducing the size of your social circle, not sharing food or drinks, and staying home if you feel sick or have been exposed to COVID-19. More information is available online at https://www.k-state.edu/today/announcement/?id=67583.
Anyone who has symptoms, is a close contact of a positive patient, or would like information about how to get tested should contact their health care provider or call the Riley County Screening Line at 785-323-6400. The Screening Line is staffed by nurses and is available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
13 Active Outbreaks in Riley County:
Riley County Statistics for Friday, September 4, 2020:
Percent positive information is updated each Monday and is also posted online in the Data & Info section of the Riley County Coronavirus web page at http://rileycountyks.gov/coronavirus.
Case counts are preliminary and subject to verification.
The next media update, including the latest percent positive information, will be sent on Tuesday, September 8. The Riley County Health Department will be closed Monday for Labor Day.
The next video update will be Wednesday, September 9 at 4:15 p.m. on the Riley County Health Department’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/Rileycountyhealthdepartment/.
For more information about Riley County’s response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, visit the Riley County website at www.rileycountyks.gov/coronavirus, follow RCHD on Facebook at /Rileycountyhealthdepartment/ and Twitter @RileyCoHealth.