Spike in COVID-19 cases forces repeating call from doctors, locals to mask up, follow CDC guidelines

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Medical personnel prepare to administer a COVID-19 swab at a drive-through testing site in Lawrence, N.Y., Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020. U.S. health officials are redefining what it means to have close contact with someone with COVID-19. On Wednesday, the CDC changed it to a total of 15 minutes or more, so briefer but repeated contacts that add up to 15 minutes now count. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — The COVID-19 pandemic forced much of the public to be shut in their homes, away from the rest of the world earlier this year. As many emerge back out, Dr. Johnny Walker of Access Health said a trend in COVID-19 cases is emerging too.

“As we start to open schools and businesses and work places back up, we are seeing an increase in COVID-19 cases,” Walker said. “It really is from interacting with people as we begin getting back to our normal lives.”

While day-to-day life starts looking normal again, Raleigh County resident Cheryl Len said she is still taking precautionary measures. For her, the pandemic forced a new normal to stay safe and healthy.

“[I] go to the grocery store in the middle of the day when it’s not as busy and not as crowded,” Len said. “Stay home as much as possible, order groceries and come and pick them up. No social events.”

Walker stressed to continue following CDC guidelines, which includes wearing masks in public and continuously washing hands,

For Oliver Bradley, who lives in Raleigh County, said following these guidelines work to benefit you and those around you.

“We got to do it not only for us, but we got to be mindful that we’re doing it to protect others also,” Bradley said.

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