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By SARA ARTHURS

STAFF WRITER

Hancock County now has three confirmed cases of COVID-19, one of whom has been hospitalized.

Hancock Public Health said Friday it had been notified of the second and third positive test results. Both patients were tested at the Blanchard Valley Hospital testing and triage center.

One, a 33-year-old female, was transferred to an out-of-county hospital for treatment. The other, a 37-year-old female, is self-isolating at home, according to an email from Hancock Public Health.

Hancock Public Health reported on Sunday that a 21-year-old female resident of Hancock County had tested positive and was self-isolating.

Health Commissioner Karim Baroudi, in a video released Friday afternoon, said the health department would not be releasing any further information because of strict privacy laws.

“It’s very important for all of us to understand that it shouldn’t matter where the cases live or where they work,” he added. “What matters is what we do, each and every one of us, moving forward, to slow the spread of this virus.”

This includes washing our hands, staying home when we are sick and practicing physical distancing, Baroudi said.

He said we should all assume that the virus is in fact spreading.

If Hancock Public Health believes you may have been exposed from contact with one of the three cases, “We will contact you,” Baroudi said.

He pointed out that all three local cases are young people — an indication that the community’s young people need to be careful and responsible, and realize that they can in fact get sick from this virus.

In the future, Hancock Public Health plans to announce updates on its Facebook and Twitter accounts and on its website, http://hancockpublichealth.com/

Baroudi urged community members to seek out trusted sources of information: “Please do not spread rumors.”

The county’s coronavirus hotline can be reached at 419-425-9999.

Baroudi’s video can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HAWJx9Cj7F4

Arthurs: 419-427-8494

Send an E-mail to Sara Arthurs

Twitter: @swarthurs

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