Muhlenberg County officials have created a multi-agency task force to keep the public informed about the county’s response to the novel coronavirus and to look for ways to improve that response.

Muhlenberg Judge-Executive Curtis McGehee announced the task force Monday. The Muhlenberg County Health Department announced earlier the county has two confirmed cases of the coronavirus. A health department press release says the overall risk to county residents is believed to be low.

McGehee said the task force includes health department and elected officials, representatives from local law enforcement agencies and emergency management, school and hospital administrators, the county and Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office.

“I noticed, in talking to people in our community and what I was seeing on social media, that people were concerned about coronavirus, specifically covid-19,” McGehee said Monday morning. The goal of the task force is to see “what we may do as a community to make sure we aren’t leaving any stones unturned” in its response to the virus, McGehee said.

“The task force is broken up into several small groups and focuses on areas such as emergency services, law enforcement, public relations, public health and education. Members of the chamber of commerce and the Muhlenberg County Alliance for Progress area representing businesses on the task force.

“We want to get those people on board because businesses are struggling,” McGehee said.

Information will be posted on the Muhlenberg County 911 Facebook page. “That seemed the best-connected site,” McGehee said.

The idea, McGehee said, is that the task force will provide people with relevant information to help keep the community stay “as calm as possible.

“There are a lot of rumors about what people can and can’t do,” McGehee said. The Facebook page will be updated with information “so people are aware of the facts,” he said.

“We obviously want this task force to work closely with the governor’s office, the health department and the CDC,” McGehee said. “I wanted people in place on a local level to make sure we are doing everything we need to be doing.”

James Mayse, 270-691-7303, jmayse@messenger-inquirer.com, Twitter: @JamesMayse

James Mayse, 270-691-7303, jmayse@messenger-inquirer.com, Twitter: @JamesMayse

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