Batesville mayor releases statement regarding COVID-19; county health official also addresses issue

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Batesville Mayor Rick Elumbaugh released a statement regarding the coronavirus.

In the statement, Elumbaugh says:

“As we face many uncertainties in the coming days in our fight against COVID-19, the city of Batesville wants to express our sincere appreciation to all our health care employees/staff, churches, non-profit organizations, area schools, local businesses, and our citizens who are striving to be part of the solution.

Most importantly, I urge you to continue following all federal and state guidelines directed by our president and governor.

At this time, all city services such as sanitation, water, wastewater, streets, cemetery, and animal control departments are working. We will continue to keep you updated on any changes as they occur.

If you need help or assistance in any way, please call (870) 793-2400 or email the city’s administrative office. We will do our best to help you get the resources you need.

Staying positive at this uncertain time is crucial. We are extremely blessed to live in a city with an abundance of citizens who want to help and support others. Continued prayers for our city, our state, and our country.”

(Click here for the city’s online contact form.)

And with the first three cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Independence County, Jordan Weaver, MD. the health officer for the county, issued some guidance and reassurance in a statement.

The Arkansas Department of Health is closely monitoring the situation in our area and are ensuring the positive cases in the county are taking appropriate steps to isolate as well as track anyone they may have exposed, Weaver said.

Weaver says the county has been preparing for the coronavirus for weeks now and is taking appropriate steps to limit the spread in the community. Community leaders and healthcare providers are working closely together with the guidance of the Arkansas Department of Health to keep citizens safe, Weaver said.

In addition to the standard precautions (washing hands, avoiding touching your face, and practicing appropriate social distancing), Weaver recommends that if one is experiencing symptoms of cough, fever, or shortness of breath, to stay home and call their physician.

Online resources for COVID-19 screenings are also available through UAMS and White River Medical Center. Due to limited testing availability in the community and statewide, officials recommend the sickest and highest-risk patients to be tested. Multiple organizations are working to improve access to testing in our community as soon as possible. If you do not meet the criteria to test but are sick, then you will likely be instructed to self-isolate as a precaution, Weaver said.

Weaver also says that in addition to the coronavirus, the county is also seeing a large number of flu cases. The protection measures are the same for the flu as COVID-19. He recommends that residents have two weeks of food in necessary supplies in case of a possible quarantine. There is no need to stockpile months of supplies, Weaver says, noting that only prevents others in the community from having the necessary supplies they need.

Weaver notes there’s a large amount of misinformation circulating through social media and to be cautious about information posted on those platforms. Weaver only recommends to only use trusted sources for information regarding COVID-19.

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