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1st Columbiana County COVID death marked in July

LISBON — For the first time this month, Columbiana County’s health department reported on Wednesday the death of a county resident from complications of COVID-19. A 67-year-old woman who lived in a long-term care facility became the 61st resident of the county to die from the virus. She is the 34th resident of a long-term care facility to die from the disease, which has claimed nine inmates from FCI-Elkton and 18 members of the general community.

The numbers of cases in Columbiana County rose to 1,419, an increase of 13 cases since Monday. There have now been 924 inmates from the FCI-Elkton prison to test positive for coronavirus and 93 residents of long-term care facilities, which is an increase of four cases and three cases, respectively. There were six new cases from the general community.

During Wednesday’s meeting of the county health board, a new seasonal nurse who will serve as a COVID tracker was hired, Martise Malone of Lisbon. Medical services administrator Jamie Elenz said Malone has a good personality for talking to those who are learning they have tested positive or may have been exposed to someone positive for the coronavirus. Elenz noted when people learn this news they are often angry, upset or scared and need someone who can talk them through it. Malone was hired utilizing COVID grant money with a temporary contract running through November.

The increases in cases in Columbiana County came on a day when Gov. Mike DeWine held a press conference in the early evening, urging Ohioans to continue working to stop the spread of COVID-19 and wear masks when out in public. Although DeWine did not mandate the wearing of masks, he did suggest wearing a mask is a better alternative to closing the state again.

Ohio’s case numbers are nearing 70,000 at 69,311 and there have now been 3,075 deaths linked to COVID-19 in the state.

djohnson@mojonews.com

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