The best methods of prevention are wearing your face mask, social distancing, washing your hands, and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces.

   When a lab processes a test for COVID -19 and it is positive they are  supposed to contact the county of residence ( where the person lives) and notify the Health Department of that positive result. Sometimes that happens sometimes it does not. We at the Health Department can only report to you what’s been reported to us and confirmed by the positive lab result.

   When the Health Department receives notification that a person has been tested for COVID-19 they record this information and start monitoring this person and checking daily for those test results to come in. The HD will give the person a call and make sure they know to quarantine, symptoms to watch for and record, when to seek medical care, and so on.

   When test results are received that is recorded. If negative the surveillance is done for that person at that time.

If the test results come back positive that is recorded, a Health Department investigation and contact tracing takes place at that point. The patient will be called to see what symptoms they are having and monitor their condition. They will be asked to give the HD names of people they have been in contact with during the time frame specified by the Health Department.

   The Health Department begins contact tracing in which they will notify each and every contact that they have been reported as having been exposed to a person with COVID-19. They will not be told who that person is. All contacts of that person will be notified so that they will know to monitor themselves for symptoms and that they should quarantine at home for 14 days. The incubation period for virus is up to 14 days after that point if the person has not contracted the virus they should be safe from THAT exposure and resume normal activities.

   If the person in quarantine starts having symptoms of COVID-19 such as loss of taste and/or smell, shortness of breath, fever of 100.4 or greater, body aches, sore throat, cough that suggests that person needs to be tested for COVID-19. The same process as listed above is followed for everyone who gets tested. Some people who have tested positive had absolutely no symptoms.

   Testing is available in Doddridge County through Ritchie Regional Health Care (304-873-1401) and Doddridge County Health Department (304-873-1531) by appointment. For quicker test results testing is offered at Medbrook Primary Care in Bridgeport (304-842-9140) and United Hospital Center (855-988-2273) call for testing locations and schedule.

IF you have any further questions regarding COVID-19 CDC has alot of good information as well as the Coronavirus Website. You may also call us at the Doddridge County Health Department 304-873-1531.