Virginia Health Department officials now indicate the Roanoke region is seeing sustained community transmission of COVID-19, as the number of confirmed cases has risen to a larger level.

VDH reports that, in Southwestern Virginia in particular, it is seeing many of the new cases are related to other activities, in addition to travel. VDH advises that Franklin County is at a place where VDH are calling the transmission of COVID-19 a sustained community transmission.

The definition of that is when there is greater than five cases, not including family members, acquired in the community. As of Friday, there were approximately 10 confirmed cases in Franklin County, which is one of the higher reporting amounts in the region.

As a result of such information from the Virginia Health Department, those living in Franklin County are strongly encouraged to follow social distancing guidance and comply with Virginia’s Stay at Home Order.

Residents are urged to practice healthy disease prevention practices including:

• Washing hands often with soap (preferably 20 or more second duration)

• Avoiding touching your face with unwashed hands

• Avoiding close contact with people who are sick

• Staying home if you are sick

• Social Distancing

• Avoiding Groups over 10 Persons at this time

• Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces

Cases will continue to be identified through testing, but more often people with symptoms associated with COVID-19 (fever, coughing and difficulty breathing) are being evaluated by their health care provider. Those with milder symptoms must stay home, avoid others, take fever-reducing medications, and practice infection control at home.

If symptoms become more serious, they should seek emergency care. It is important to note, some people who are carriers of the COVID-19 virus do not show symptoms but can transmit the virus.

By staying at home, one can prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the community.

If one develops a fever, cough or difficulty breathing, stay home and call a health care provider. If it is a medical emergency, call 9-1-1.

Franklin County officials have been responding to the COVID-19 crisis for several weeks. The county continues to provide guidance and collaborate with local officials, health care providers, first responders, schools, businesses, social service agencies and others, as well as respond to a high volume of questions from the public.

For more information, visit the County’s COVID-19 page at www.franklincountyva.gov/678/Coronavirus-COVID-19.

Residents are advised that by staying at home, they can help prevent the acceleration of community spread of COVID-19 in the Franklin County community. Citizens are requested to assist one another with this effort.

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