Coronavirus in Tennessee: 175 new Rhea County cases confirmed in one day

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DAYTON, Tenn. (WATE) – A dramatic increase in COVID-19 cases was reported in one Tennessee county on Thursday.

The Tennessee Department of Health confirmed an additional 175 cases in Rhea County on Thursday.

There were just 13 total cases in Rhea County as of Wednesday. A total of 188 cases have now been reported in the county.

According to ABC affiliate WTVC, The Tennessee Department of Health confirmed the cluster is connected to a large number of migrant workers at a farm in the county who have tested positive for the virus. Officials have not identified the specific farm.

State epidemiologist Dr. John Dunn told WTVC they are working with the farm’s leadership to isolate those infected.

Dr. Craig Swafford, a surgeon at Rhea County Medical Center, said the hospital is, “working to try and make sure that they have everything they need and will not be exposing other folks in our community.”

Rhea County Executive George Thacker told WTVC the county and the state health department have enough resources to conduct contact tracing. Thacker urged people to take extra precautions during the Memorial Day weekend.

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