Two Ardmore bars, one restaurant temporarily closed following exposure to COVID-19
Two local bars and an Ardmore restaurant are temporarily closed following reports of individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 visiting or working at the locations.
On Sunday June 28, Bar 115 and the Dew Drop Inn both released statements on social media explaining the temporary closures. According to a statement from Bar 115, a patron in the establishment on Friday and Saturday tested positive for COVID-19.
The bar will be closed until further notice for thorough cleaning and sanitizing and all Bar 115 employees will be tested prior to reopening. “Our employees’ and customers' health and safety come first and we feel it is our responsibility to make our customers aware of this unfortunate situation,” the statement read.
According to a statement from the Dew Drop Inn, an employee at the bar tested positive for COVID-19. The bar has been temporarily closed until further notice. “We take the COVID-19 pandemic very seriously and are committed to keeping a clean and safe environment for our team and guests,” the statement read.
Located across the street from the Dew Drop Inn and under the same ownership, Cafe Alley announced on Monday, June 29 that it would also be temporarily closed. The restaurant owners cited potential exposure of COVID-19 as the reason for the closure in a statement on Facebook.
During the closure, the restaurant will reportedly be conducting a fogging process with EPA approved disinfectant. According to the statement, the fogging process helps get disinfectant into hard-to-reach areas and is the recommended application process via the Centers for Disease Control.
The Oklahoma State Department of Health District 8, which includes Carter County, released an update on the situation on Monday, June 29, confirming that the department has been made aware of many recent reports on social media about positive COVID-19 cases in the community.
The release further stated that the district has been seeing cases associated with family gatherings, work sites, churches and bars.
Mendy Spohn, the Health Department Regional Administrative Director, said in the release, that there was a recent case with a symptomatic individual who continued working for three days while feeling unwell. However, the individual’s place of work was not released.
The health department cited over 25 positive cases and 30 contacts that stretched over four counties stemming from the symptomatic individual mentioned. “We are seeing infectious positive cases knowingly attend work and other gatherings when they should be isolated," Spohn said.
Anyone who is concerned about getting sick from the virus is advised to get tested and stay at home as much as possible.
According to the health department, the incubation period for COVID-19 is two to 14 days, with an average of five to six days. As an example, an individual who was exposed to an infected person on June 26 could become infected and contagious anywhere from June 28 to July 9.
Those who have been exposed and get a test done within the first few days are recommended to test again five to seven days after exposure. Symptoms of the virus may be very mild, but the potential to spread the virus remains high, according to the release.
Curbside testing is available for free by appointment at all County Health Departments in Oklahoma. According to the health department, individuals need to stay in their vehicles while tested and leave pets at home. Testing is also available through the Chickasaw Nation and many urgent care facilities and private doctor’s offices.
“If you are a positive case, it is critical for you to provide the names and numbers of close contacts. You are putting their lives and the community at risk if you don’t,” Spohn said.
Individuals who have been in contact with someone who has tested positive will be notified by the health department and given an amount of time to stay home in quarantine. According to the release, quarantine is for a person who is currently healthy but could become contagious due to being in close contact with a positive case.
The health department further stressed the importance of individuals who have tested positive or are awaiting test results to stay out of the public, except to seek medical care. “It is smart for all of those who seek testing to isolate from the public until the test results are known,” Spohn said.
For more information about COVID-19, visit https://coronavirus.health.ok.gov or call 2-1-1.