Rise in SLC Covid-19 cases: Testing offered for those potentially exposed

CANTON, NY — The New York State Department of Health and St. Lawrence County Public Health Department are investigating reports of potential COVID-19 exposures occurring between the dates August 25 – September 7, 2020. As part of our public health outreach, the New York State Department of Health and St. Lawrence County Public Health Department are offering COVID-19 testing following reports of exposures associated with a cluster of cases in Massena, NY.

The investigation, while in its early stages, has determined that a cluster of 22 individuals has tested positive for COVID-19.  New York State Department of Health working with the St. Lawrence County Public Health Department, has successfully reached more than 150 people who may be at risk, and they are actively working to identify additional individuals who may be impacted.

A testing site has been developed to test individuals who believe they may have been in contact with a person who tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 14 days, regardless of whether you wore a mask and practiced social distancing. Test samples will be collected and sent to the laboratory for analysis. Once tested, you will need to self-quarantine until the results come back. If the results are positive, you will be contacted by St. Lawrence County Public Health Department for instruction on isolation and follow-up.

New York State Department of Health and St. Lawrence County Public Health Department have arranged for testing to be held at the Massena Community Center, 60 Beach Street, Massena, on Wednesday, September 9, 2020 from 11:00AM to 2:00PM.

Anyone under the age of 18 must have a parent/guardian present to sign consent. Out of an abundance of caution, individuals who are experiencing COVID-like symptoms will not be permitted at this testing site. If you have symptoms and need testing, please contact your healthcare provider or one of the testing sites below to make an appointment:

◦ St. Lawrence Health System: 315-261-6240
◦ Claxton Hepburn Medical Center: 315-713-6655

All New Yorkers are reminded that emergency regulations banning large gatherings are still in effect and face coverings should be worn in public when a social distance of 6 feet cannot be maintained.

Everyone in the community can continue to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 by following these recommendations:

• Wear a mask at all times in public spaces, especially when 6 feet of distance cannot be maintained.
• Practice safe distancing—keep 6 feet of distance between yourself and others when in public.
• Wash hands well and often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
• Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces.
• Cover coughs and sneezes—stay home if you are sick.
• Avoid close and continued contact with other people not in your household. Non-essential gatherings continue to be limited to 50 people.
• Stay local, refrain from traveling to states listed in the New York Travel Advisory
(https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/covid-19-travel-advisory).