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Weakley County confirms COVID-19 case

Weakley County officials confirmed its first case of COVID-19 Friday afternoon. Mayor Jake Bynum posted the news on his Facebook.

Bynum said he was informed of the case by the Tennessee Department of Health. The news was "both anticipated and dreaded," said Bynum in a video on Facebook. "The individual is recovering comfortably and resting in quarantine."

In the release (included below), Bynum urges residents feeling ill and seeking medical care to call the Weakley County Health Department before going in. Bynum said that residents should practice good hygiene and social distancing in order to "protect the aging community" who are more vulnerable to the virus.

The Tennessee Department of Health confirmed one case of COVID-19 in Weakley County earlier this week, but later clarified that it was a "clerical error."

Dr. Andy Lewter, University of Tennessee at Martin's Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, told WUTM News that a confirmation of a case in Weakley County "would probably change how the campus is operated."

"I think that anything like that is very situational, dependent on what the facts of the case are," Lewter said. The university has not made a statement announcing new changes to campus operations.

COVID-19 is a respiratory illness, so any person with preexisting conditions, especially respiratory conditions, should take extra precautions. It is recommended that any person over the age of 60 avoid public areas to reduce the risk of infection.

A number of businesses in Tennessee have closed in order to help curb the spread of the coronavirus. Weakley County businesses like Martin's - Coffee & Bakery and Skyhawk Nutrition have closed due to the global pandemic.

Bynum recommends "to try and stay calm, to stay well, to stay positive and to stay at home."

Statement posted to Facebook

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