CONCORD, NH — Both state and local health officials are requesting people come forward and get tested after more coronavirus cases were discovered connected to the Gate City Church in Nashua.
Nine positive test results of been identified as connected to parishioners who attended services between Sept. 19, and Sept. 28. Officials learned about the outbreak on Oct. 5, according to Bobbie Bagley, the director of the city’s public health department. Health officials are monitoring the situation and requesting anyone connected to the church at that time to be tested.
“We know that we can do this, Nashua,” she said. “We’ve had a low incident rate and a low percent positive rate for months. We also know that we can mitigate and work together to keep those numbers down.”
The department is hosting a free testing clinic from 3:30 to 5 p.m. in the church parking lot on Franklin Street for anyone associated with the church. COVID-19 testing is also available at Southern NH Medical Center West Campus, St. Joseph Hospital Milford Medical Center, and the Lamprey Health Care on Prospect Street.
New Cases, Another Death In New Hampshire
Another fatality was reported in the state Thursday.
The woman, who lived in a long-term care facility in Hillsborough County, was 80 years of age or older. She became the 448th fatality in the state.
Public health officials also reported 79 new positive coronavirus test results with a positivity rate of 0.7 percent based on 5,582 specimens collected Wednesday with 1,337 tests pending. Tuesday’s specimen collections were also upgraded to 8,029 from 6,591.
There are 8,878 accumulative cases of COVID-19 in New Hampshire with 7,898 recoveries reported about 89 percent of all cases.
Of the new cases, 55 were polymerase chain reaction tests and 24 were antigen tests and their results boosted the state’s active cases to 531.
Fifteen of the new positive test results were children while 45 were female. Twenty live in Hillsborough County outside of Manchester and Nashua, 19 reside in Rockingham County, 13 live in Nashua, and five live in Merrimack County.
Two of the 79 cases required hospitalization but only 14 people are currently receiving extended care in New Hampshire. The state said Thursday that 10 had no identified risk factors.
Approximately 2,850 people are under public health monitoring with 287,628 people tested via 482,118 PCR tests.
One Outbreak Closes
State health officials said Thursday that one of the state’s institutional associated outbreaks had been closed.
Mountain View Community in Ossipee was removed from the list Wednesday after eight residents and four staffers became infected. There were no deaths at the facility.
Three other outbreaks remain active: The Bedford Hills Center, where 55 residents and 15 staffers have become infected, leading to five deaths; Pine Rock Manor in Warner, a dementia facility, where four residents and one staffer are infected; and Warde Health Center in Windham, where three residents and one staffer have contracted COVID-19.
K-19 School Updates
A number of schools reported new cases of the coronavirus while others reported recoveries to the state Thursday.
Merrimack High School reported three active cases and four recoveries while Manchester Memorial High School reported a new case and the Manchester School of Technology also reported its first case. The Litchfield Middle School reported its first case while the James Mastricola Elementary School in Merrimack reported its first case.
The state currently has 36 active cases.
Stop The Spread Of COVID-19
The COVID-19 virus is spread through respiratory droplets, usually through coughing and sneezing, and exposure to others who are sick or might be showing symptoms.
Health officials emphasize residents should follow these recommendations:
Avoid any domestic and international travel, especially on public transportation such as buses, trains, and airplanes.
Practice social distancing. Stay at least 6 feet from other people, including distancing while in waiting areas or lines.
When you can’t practice 6 feet of social distancing, wear a face covering.
Anyone who is told to self-quarantine and stay at home due to exposure to a person with confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 needs to stay home and not go out into public places.
If you are 60 years or older or have chronic and underlying health conditions, you need to stay home and not go out.
Avoid gatherings of 10 people or more.
Employers should work from home as much as possible.
There is increasing evidence that the virus can survive for hours or possibly days on surfaces. People should clean frequently touched surfaces, including door handles, grocery carts and grocery basket handles, etc.
Take the same precautions as you would if you were sick:
Stay home and avoid public places.
Wear a face covering.
Cover mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing.
Wash hands frequently.
Disinfect frequently touched surfaces.
More information from the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services about coronavirus can be found here on the department’s website.
Got a news tip? Send it to [email protected] View videos on Tony Schinella’s YouTube channel.
This article originally appeared on the Concord Patch