Riley and Pottawatomie County COVID-19 case numbers
Riley County has gained five new positive cases of COVID-19 and eight more recoveries since Thursday, bringing the total number of active cases to 141 and recoveries to 193.
There are now zero COVID-19 positive patients at Ascension Via Christi Hospital, although one patient, who was previously on a ventilator and has now tested negative, is there in recovery.
Julie Gibbs, administrator for the Riley County Health Department, says she hopes between the mask ordinance and the latest health order, COVID-19 case numbers will continue trending down.
“Hopefully all of that will be the perfect storm to the opposite side, to that downhill trend we would like to see,” Gibbs said. “We’re starting to see that, knock on wood but let’s continue that.”
Riley County has a cumulative total of 337 positive cases and currently has 243 pending test results, 3,250 negative test results and three COVID-19 related deaths.
Pottawatomie County has confirmed six new positive cases, bringing its number of active cases to six, cumulative number of positive cases to 89, recoveries to 83 and pending test results to 36.
Insight from Riley County Police Department Capt. Kurt Moldrup on mask ordinance
Kurt Moldrup, assistant director for the Riley County Police Department, gave some insight during a video conference Friday into his approach to the Manhattan mask ordinance.
He says that while he struggled with ordinance at first because it created the potential for conflict, he has since maintained a positive attitude.
“We have an ordinance now, we have it,” Moldrup said. “The debate was had and there was time for that and now we have an ordinance, so let’s move forward and make this positive. I think we’re seeing that.”
Since the ordinance was approved by the Manhattan City Commission on July 7, Moldrup says he has seen more people wearing masks.
“I think that’s a good thing,” Moldrup said. “I think (that’s) what the intent of the ordinance was and I think we are seeing that. And honestly, I think we were seeing that even when the governor’s order came out. I think it just kind of stepped up the understanding of a lot of people that the masks are important.”
According to Moldrup, a recent donation of about 1,000 surgical masks to the RCPD should help with enforcement and education.
He says if a person without a mask is encountered, they will be given a mask at first instead of a warning or citation.
RCHD business visits
The Riley County Health Department will begin making visits to local businesses Monday to check on staff-screening logs.
Riley County’s latest health order, Health Order No. 14, requires bars and restaurants to check employees for COVID-19 symptoms before each shift and to record these results.
RCHD has also begun assisting businesses that have seen employees test positive for COVID-19.
To begin the process of this assistance, businesses can email details to firstname.lastname@example.org.