Shelby County coronavirus cases hit 170; health department issues shelter order for county

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — There are now 170 positive cases of COVID-19 in Shelby County, health officials said Wednesday. It’s an increase of 35 from the previous day.

One hundred twenty of those cases were reported in the last three days. Many more people had tested negative, officials said

Of the positive cases, 74% were 60 and under, and 38% were between 21 and 40 years old.

About 5% of those diagnosed, or about 10 people, required hospitalization.

Transmission within the workplace appears to be occurring locally, health department director Alisa Haushalter said.

“It’s really critical that individuals do not go to work when they are ill,” she said.

Haushalter said she expected it to take 30 to 60 days to see the impact of the social distancing measures being put into place in the community.

Effective Wednesday, the Shelby County Health Department issued a directive asking non-essential business and workers to “shelter in” and not be out unless necessary, including in the unincorporated areas of the county and the municipalities.

“I think we have a narrow window, and if we act together, and all the citizens … will cooperate with what we’re trying to do … we may be able to prevent the overwhelming of our health care system and somewhat blunt the spike we are anticipating with our cases,” said Dr. Bruce Randolph, health director with the health department.

Across Tennessee, there were 784 cases with three deaths, state officials said.

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