Two cases of coronavirus have been confirmed for Monroe County.

Monroe County Mayor Mitch Ingram distributed a press release Friday afternoon announcing the first two confirmed cases.

“The Monroe County Health Department and East Tennessee Regional Health Department have confirmed two positive cases of the COVID-19 in Monroe County,” said Ingram in a news release. “Citizen safety, health and well being are our top priorities.”

Ingram stated that the individuals who have been diagnosed with the coronavirus are under supervision by the Regional Health Department and under a 14 day isolation period.

Corie Gouge, the assessment and planning coordinator for the Monroe County Health Department, stated that the department was limited in the amount of information that they can give on who those with confirmed cases of coronavirus have come in contact with.

“We cannot speak about specific cases or anything like that,” said Gouge. “We will contact any person (who tests positive for COVID-19) and they will have to inform anyone that they may have been in contact with.”

Those who have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for the virus should make a follow up examination with their primary care doctor or at the health department for testing.

“We would encourage everyone to continue practicing social distancing, washing your hands, covering your cough or sneeze, use a tissue and follow the CDC guidelines,” said Gouge. “You should also make sure not to touch your eyes, nose or mouth and make sure to stay home if you are sick.”

The general public is encouraged to call the East Regional Health Office COVID-19 hotline at 865-549-5343 for any questions they may have.

“We must take care of our most vulnerable citizens. They need us,” said Ingram.

He urged people to take more precautions during this time to prevent the potential of the virus from spreading further.

“Stay home if you are sick, wash your hands often and maintain social distancing when in public places,” he said. “If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical care.”

Ingram stated that county citizens are able to call city and county offices to find available resources they may need.

“Unity is necessary during this time,” said Ingram. “We are Monroe Countians and our individual actions have the potential to impact us. By following CDC recommendations, we are all doing our part to protect Monroe County. We are Monroe County strong.”

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