DOYLESTOWN, Pa. - After five schools were closed in Bucks County because of possible exposure to coronavirus, health officials say there is no evidence of the virus among those who came into contact with an infected person at a recent gathering.
All of the people will be medically cleared provided nobody develops symptoms before Monday, the county said in a news release.
Five schools in Bucks County closed Friday out of concern that several students and staff may have been exposed to coronavirus. Dr. David Damsker, director of the county's department of health, said he hopes the schools can reopen on Monday.
Central Bucks School District said officials found out late Thursday night someone from out of state, who is now known to have coronavirus, went to a party at a home within the district, said a Bucks County spokesperson.
Multiple children and staff, who attend the five closed schools, were at the party, officials said.
At the time of the gathering, no one, including the attendee, knew that the person had COVID-19, officials said. They did not disclose where the gathering was or where the infected person is from.
The district said it consulted with local and state health authorities, and the decision to close the possibly exposed schools was made "out of an abundance of caution."
The county department of health led the effort to identify and contact all who went to the gathering and and checked them for symptoms. A small number of people who had cold-like symptoms were tested Friday for COVID-19 at the state laboratory in Exton.
Test results all proved negative, Dr. Damsker said.
Closed Friday were:
- Butler Elementary School
- Titus Elementary School
- Tohickon Middle School
- Tamanend Middle School
- Central Bucks High School South
All school district buildings will close after dismissal Friday and will stay closed through the weekend. The district will not have any after-school activities or practices starting on Friday, and no outdoor organizations will be allowed to use the district's outdoor facilities.
Planned band and athletic activities scheduled to take lace off-site will continue as scheduled.
The Bucks County Department of Health is continuing to contact anyone who attended the private party and check them for illness.
So far there have been no confirmed cases of coronavirus in Bucks County, but the state announced its first presumed cases Friday morning. One person tested positive in Wayne County and another in Delaware County, said Governor Tom Wolf Friday morning.
Wolf also signed an emergency disaster declaration on Friday, to provide increased support to state agencies involved in the virus response.
Officials say the most important preventive steps are:
- washing your hands frequently, with soap, for at least 20 seconds
- avoiding close contact with people who are sick
- avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth
- staying home when sick
- cleaning and disinfecting frequently-touched objects and surfaces