Cass County Public Health Gears Up for COVID-19

April 2, 2020

Atlantic, IA — Cass County Public Health is busy planning and preparing for any potential outbreak of COVID-19 in the Cass County area.  “While there are no known cases of COVID-19 in Cass County at this time, we are prepared for the likely event of some COVID cases appearing in the next few weeks,” explained Beth Olsen, Cass County Public Health Director. Beth explained that while Public Health does not do any testing of patients, they are responsible for disease investigation should a resident test positive. As of 7:30 am on April 2, CCHS had tested 43 people for COVID-19, with 38 of those tests coming back negative and 5 still pending results. These numbers only reflect people who sought care and testing at CCHS, not those who may have been tested in other medical facilities. Regardless of where they are tested, if a Cass County resident tests positive for COVID-19, then Public Health will be notified by the Iowa Department of Public Health. If a resident tests positive, Public Health staff will follow the same process as with any community infectious disease exposure.

The Cass County Board of Health contracts with Cass County Health System to manage Public Health services for Cass County.  This arrangement makes it very efficient for Beth to coordinate with both the county emergency management services and CCHS.  “We are fortunate to be in a situation where our county emergency management team and the health system work very closely together every day.  That makes us well prepared to work together effectively and efficiently in times of crisis.”