Kossuth County Area Businesses Following Guidelines to Prevent Spread of COVID-19

Misinformation can easily circulate in communities during a crisis. So, it is with the current COVID-19 pandemic. Rumors about positive cases and employees being sent home from work due to possible symptoms of the coronavirus have been topics of conversations in Kossuth County over the last couple of weeks.
There is no grain of truth to these rumors, according to the Kossuth County Public Health Department and Kossuth County Emergency Management.
Kossuth County has had only one positive case of the novel coronavirus, which was reported in late March. Dave Penton, Kossuth County Emergency Management Coordinator, said the Iowa Department of Public Health will report any positive cases to Kossuth County Public Health Department. At the same time, Penton will receive the information via Department of Homeland Security.
Penton said the Kossuth County Public Health Department and his office communicate regularly with local manufacturers, and it has been an open dialogue. “Our businesses and industries are following guidelines to prevent COVID-19 outbreaks, as recommended by the Iowa Department of Public Health,” said Penton.
Penton said it is crucial to think first before repeating rumors, whether it is in a conversation with a family member or friend, or just sharing a post on social media. During a pandemic, misinformation is not just misleading, it can be dangerous. “Spreading rumors and misinformation could lead to material or bodily harm,” said Penton.
Penton said the Internet is a platform to share data but does not have mechanisms to vet the accuracy of information. “People think they are helping by sharing a post or liking a post, thinking the information is useful but this just helps spread misinformation,” said Penton.
Penton urges the public to stay calm and to continue practicing measures in thwarting the spread of COVID-19, such as social distancing, covering your mouth and when coughing or sneezing, and stay away from people who are ill. “If you hear something about the novel coronavirus in Kossuth County, make sure it comes from trusted sources,” said Penton.

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