LOWVILLE — There are still no confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus in Lewis County, but concerns about people returning to their camps or coming to visit from COVID-19 hot zones have surfaced.
As of Thursday morning, 32 of the 59 COVID-19 tests performed to date had returned negative but 27 results were still pending and more tests are being performed daily.
If the latest Public Health recommendation is heeded, people returning to their camps and seasonal homes in the county from the greater New York City area will add themselves to the 33 people already on precautionary quarantine.
A news release issued by the Office of the Board of Legislators on Thursday afternoon outlined recommendations given by Director of Public Health Ashley Waite for anyone who has spent more than 24 hours in the greater NYC area since March 1 and plans to be in the county for “one or more nights.”
The map showing the “greater New York City area” includes Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, the Bronx, Staten Island, Long Island, nine counties north of the city in New York state and 19 in New Jersey.
In addition to calling public health after arriving in Lewis County, people fitting the criteria are asked to self-quarantine for 14 days.
“This is a guidance, not an executive order,” said County Manager Ryan Piche. “People coming from urban areas like our rural lifestyle, but we also have a rural healthcare system. They have to be aware that our capacity is different than other parts of the state and we need to protect that capacity.”
The value the county places on the property owners and visitors was emphasized in the news release, and Board Chairman Lawrence Dolhof and Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Kristen Aucter both asked for voluntary compliance with the recommendations for the health and safety of the people in the area.
“When this pandemic passes, the Adirondack Tug Hill Region will be ready to welcome everyone back with open arms,” Mrs. Aucter said.
Visitors and seasonal residents can contact the Public Health Department at 315-376-5453.