Monroe County Public Health and ADLM Counties Emergency Management has learned that a local community member has tested positive for the novel Coronavirus, COVID-19. Public health nursing said the person is from 41-60 years of age. They cannot provide further information because of HPPA regulations.

However, the newspaper has learned from independent sources, that the person is a male and works at the pork production facility in Ottumwa.

“While this is the first case in Monroe County, it may not be the last,” said Public Health Nurse Kim Hugen. “We encourage all residents to continue to make prevention a priority. These actions include: Washing hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds each time;

Covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue or elbow/upper arm; Staying home when ill; Avoid nonessential travel and social distance.”

For individuals who have symptoms of illness, particularly with fever and cough or shortness of breath, your provider can assess whether you need to be seen in the office or if you can recover at home. If you think you need healthcare, call first. Approximately 80 percent of Iowans infected with COVID-19 will experience only a mild to moderate illness. Most mildly ill Iowans do not need to go to their healthcare provider or be tested to confirm they have COVID-19. Sick Iowans must stay home and isolate themselves from others in their house.

Stay home and isolate from others in the house until:

• You have had no fever for at least 72 hours (that is three full days of no fever without the use of medicine that reduces fevers)

• And other symptoms have improved (for example, when your cough or shortness of breath have improved)

• And at least 7 days have passed since your symptoms first appeared.

Iowans with general questions about COVID-19. For up-to-date information on COVID-19, visit the IDPH webpage at and follow the department on Facebook at @IowaDepartmentOfPublicHealth and on Twitter at @IAPublicHealth. You can also go to for information. For local information follow us on Facebook at Monroe County Public Health and ADLM Counties Emergency Management.

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