What we know about the seven confirmed COVID-19 cases in Erie County

Posted at 11:29 AM, Mar 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-16 19:07:21-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Erie County officials held a press conference Sunday to update the public following the announcement of the first confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Erie County Saturday.

"We are entering uncharted waters," Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz said Sunday. He also urged people to take this seriously.

36 samples were tested Saturday, Poloncarz said 33 were negative and three were positive.

The first three confirmed cases in Erie County are:

  • A woman in her 30s from Buffalo who recently traveled out of state, she is in quarantine at a private residence.
  • A man in his 30s from Clarence who recently traveled to Westchester County, he is in quarantine at a private residence.
  • A woman in 20s from Grand Island who recently traveled to Italy, she is in quarantine at private residence.

In regards to the positive case in Clarence, County Executive Mark Poloncarz tweeted out additional information on Sunday afternoon. According to Mr. Poloncarz, a child who attends Clarence Central Elementary lives in the same residence. The child is NOT symptomatic, though a test is being done on him/her. Clarence Central Schools are now on the growing list of districts that are closed indefinitely.

Four more cases were confirmed Sunday. Three of those tests were among nine tests run on Erie County residents at the county health lab. A fourth positive test came from a private lab. They are:

  • A man in his 30s who recently traveled to New York City
  • A woman in her 30s who recently traveled out of state
  • A woman in her 20s who recently traveled to New York City
  • A man in his 40s who recently traveled out of state.

All four of the new cases are also in quarantine in private residences. In no order, they are from Amherst, Buffalo, Elma and Orchard Park. The county health department is working to identify and monitor people who made contact with the seven people who tested positive. Please check this list of public locations to determine if you may have come in contact with any of the people who tested positive.

None of the confirmed cases are in a hospital.

The county says the cases are not believed to be related.

Poloncarz declared a state of emergency for the county Sunday and ordered all Erie County schools closed to students Monday with further guidance to come within the next 36 hours.

Below you can find multiple resources should you have any questions or concerns regarding COVID-19.

  • Erie County Department of Health, COVID-19 Information Line: (716) 858-2929 (M-F, 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.)
  • New York State Department of Health Coronavirus Hotline: 1-888-364-3065