Clay County woman shares her story of testing positive for COVID-19

Published: Aug. 19, 2020 at 5:33 PM EDT
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CLAY COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - Clay County is one of several Kentucky counties with a high positive rate.

The governor said more than 10 percent of those being tested are positive. The local health department director says most of the new cases are from a federal prison there, but there have also been spikes from church service, travel and family get-togethers.

One woman in Clay County, who first tested negative for COVID-19, got very sick and a positive test turned into 28 days of an illness that didn’t only infect her but five others in her family.

Karen Lawson has a new name since her fight with COVID-19, ”I kind of have the nickname of the COVID police.”

A family gather led to her letting her guard down and then a positive test.

“Really sick. Tired. Achy, no appetite. The headache started, then the nausea,” said Lawson.

And then five others in her family became sick as well.

”My husband thought he had a sinus infection, the seven-year-old complained his ear hurt,” said Lawson.

It all told her how quickly it can spread, but more importantly why it needs to be taken very seriously.

“The message is do everything you can to protect your family and others,” she said.

Lawson is irritated that it’s become political. Her husband is a preacher and she is a retired teacher. She understands the concerns of sending kids to school.

”And people can make the argument you can go to Walmart you can go to the grocery store. You are in and out. You’re not there for long periods of time,” said Lawson.

She advises other families to come up with a plan on how they will deal with and get through it.

Clay County health officials say they have found during their case studies that people who wear masks and keep their distance stand a much better chance of not contracting the virus.

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