By the Doddridge County
Doddridge County has been fortunate so far that all of those testing for Coronavirus have had negative results. But what happens when we get a positive result?
The Health Department will be notified of all positive results from lab, hospital, Dr. offices, etc… The Health Department is then required to report this to the State epidemiology office. Of course the patient is notified if they are not already aware of test results.
The Health Department bound by HIPAA regulations can only notify the 911 center of the patient’s address.
Once a positive result has been confirmed the Health Department will start their epi. Investigation by contacting the hospital or other entity having medical information and the patient. Information will be gathered as to when symptoms started, who this individual has come in contact with daily for at least the past 14 days. This information is needed for two reasons to try and figure out where this patient got exposed and contracted the virus and who they may have infected since then. I line-listing will be initiated on contacts.
Information about the patient’s symptoms as well as who else lives in the home will be gathered and if they have been sick. It is important to note if any of these people have traveled, and if so where to and when.
Any pre-existing conditions of the patient will be noted. Additional information will be gathered on any other lab work or testing done.
Teaching will be done with the person who tested positive about how to care for themselves.
1. Stay at home. No activities outside the home allowed during this time except to receive medical care.
2. This person should separate themselves from others as much as possi ble. Staying in a separate room preferably with its own bathroom is best.
3. Take preventive precautions:
A. Wear a facemask when you are around other people
B. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw away used tissues in lined trash can, immediately clean your hands.
C. Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water. If soap is not available utilize an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
4. You should not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, or bedding with other people in your home.
5. High touch surfaces including countertops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, phones, etc.. should be cleaned and disinfected. Also any surfaces that may have blood, stool, or body fluids on them.
6. You should monitor your symptoms and seek prompt medical attention if your illness is worsening. Call your healthcare provider before going in.
7. If you have an emergency and need to call 911, notify dispatch personnel that you have COVID-19.
8. For people who have tested positive and directed to care for themselves at home, discontinue home isolation under the following conditions:
At least 7 days have past since symptoms first appeared and Its been at least 3 days since you recovered and no fever without the use of fever reducing medications and improvement in respirator symptoms.