RUSHVILLE — With flu season upon us, citizens of Rush County need to stay diligent about protecting themselves from COVID-19. According to the Rush County Health Department, Rush County has seen a significant rise in the numbers of COVID-19.
“We have been working daily with the schools and local businesses to provide guidance and information we have to help in any way we can. We have a wonderful team with our Health Officer Dr. Russell Daugherty and public health nurse Dixie Meyer (R.N.),” Julia Apple said.
“We don’t need a vaccine to keep our schools and economy open. We have to continue social distancing, mask up, avoid crowds, stay home if sick, handwashing (S.M.A.S.H). COVID doesn’t care if this is inconvenient or we are all tired of doing it. Having our schools closed and businesses going bankrupt is far more inconvenient,” Dr. Daugherty said.
“It is important for the public to remember to do their part in this. We use the acronym S.M.A.S.H. from the Indiana State Department of Health which stands for Social Distance, Masking, Avoiding crowds, Staying home if you are sick and Hand sanitizing or washing. We do not want schools and businesses to close and we need everyone’s help to accomplish that. Be mindful of where you are going, what you are doing and who it can affect,” Apple added.
According to RCS Superintendent Matt Vance, two students at RCHS and one student at BRMS tested positive in the past few days. As a result, several students and staff members are being quarantined. Quarantined does not indicate that they are ill. Quarantining is a step to help prevent the spread.
One student at RES West tested positive last week, as a result there are 14 students and three staff members being quarantined.
These are the first positive tests at RCS since Aug. 24.
RCS are continuing with current safety practices and are constantly evaluating and changing as needed. Superintendent Vance said the staff and students have done a great job adjusting to the changes this fall.
As of Tuesday, extra curricular activities are continuing as planned with necessary modifications.
On Wednesday, a joint statement from RCS Superintendent Dr. Matt Vance, Rush County Health Officer Dr. Russell Daughterty and R.N. of the Rush County Health Department Dixie Meyer was release:
As we approach Fall Break, we would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for your assistance during the past few months. Since we have returned to school, it has truly been a different experience for all. We sincerely appreciate the cooperation between our students, staff and families.
As you know, Indiana and Rush County are now seeing a rise in positive COVID-19 cases. In order for Rush County Schools to remain open, we will need your continued assistance. The number of cases are constantly evaluated and communication with the local health department continues on a regular basis. At this time, we plan to stay on our current schedule. However, if the situation worsens, we may need to look at alternative plans.
The Rush County Health Department is encouraging everyone to SMASH:
Again, there are no changes to our current schedules at this time. We appreciate your continued support and cooperation. We wish you a great and safe Fall Break!
Free COVID-19 testing is being done in the parking lot behind RMH Walk-In Care. No appointment is necessary. When you arrive at the parking lot, call 765-932-7529 to let the testing center know that you have arrived for the free testing. Clinic staff will come to the patients’ vehicle. Patients wishing to have an appointment may do so by registering online at https://lhi.care/covidtesting.
Results will be available in 3 to 5 days via the Zotec portal by means of a link that will be sent by email or text. Results will not be available at RMH. The hospital is a specimen collection point only, not the testing facility.
As of Wednesday morning, the Indiana Department of Health reported 204 positive cases in Rush County. Decatur County has 498 positive cases, Ripley County 422 and Franklin County 365.