Cooper County increased its total COVID-19 case count to 13 Thursday. There was a potential public exposure 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday at the Dollar General on Ashley Road. A store employee tested positive.


The county and state health departments are investigating any close contacts for symptoms and exposure to the virus. The positive result is considered travel related according to a Cooper County Public Health Center news release.


The health department is working with the patient to ensure they are following all Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.


The department encourages anyone that suspects they have COVID-19 or have been in contact with someone with a confirmed case of COVID-19 to call a health care provider before seeking care, unless it is a life-threatening emergency.


Those seeking a test through the health center must be preapproved through a screening phone interview with center staff by calling 660-882-2626. The center does not have an on-staff physician, but can help residents find a provider. Those approved for a test will do so in a drive-thru setting.


While cases of COVID-19 remain relatively low in Cooper County the same cannot be said for neighboring counties. Saline County as of Thursday was at 282 total cases, Boone had 298, Pettis 110 and Moniteau had 49. Morgan County matches Cooper County with 13. The only neighboring county with fewer cases is Howard with 5.


DHSS has reported significant increases four out of the past six days in statewide COVID-19 cases, with 553 reported Thursday. Hospitalization data is not clear as the state stopped requiring a daily hospitalizations report from the Missouri Hospital Association.


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