VIDEO: Nevada County gets 1st case of COVID-19
Special to the Sierra Sun
Members of Nevada County’s Public Health Department on Monday announced the county’s first laboratory confirmed case of COVID-19 during a press conference in the Board of Supervisors’ chambers.
“The person is an adult, residing in the eastern portion of the county,” Nevada County Public Health Officer Dr. Ken Cutler said. “They likely were exposed when traveling outside of the country. Quickly upon their return they developed fever, chills, and a mild cough.”
Officials believe there has not been any exposure from this person to the community, adding that the infected has been acting very responsibly and self-quarantining at home.
“That we are announcing a case in Nevada County should not come as a surprise,” Cutler said.
While there have been no confirmed cases of community transmission in Nevada County, Cutler believes people should act like that is the case.
“With nearby counties having community transmission, and the movement of people across county borders, I think we have to act as if we have community transmission occurring here now, unrelated to this new confirmed case,” Cutler said.
Cutler went on to describe the community intervention steps being adopted to slow, not stop, the spread of the disease.
“If you are 65 years of age or older, or you have underlying medical conditions, you’ve been asked to self-isolate at home,” Cutler said. “This effort will protect the most vulnerable to serious illness caused by the disease. Please wash your hands frequently and appropriately with soap and water. Avoid touching your eyes, mouth or nose with unwashed hands. Please avoid contact with people who are sick. Stay home from work or school and from being around other people if you are sick with respiratory symptoms like fever or cough. Please avoid medical settings in general, unless necessary. If you are ill in any way, call your doctor’s office first before going in. If you are not ill, still avoid visiting hospitals, nursing homes, or long-term care facilities as much as possible.”
Cutler emphasized to not go to the ER unless essential; to practice excellent personal hygiene habits; stressed the need to practice social distancing in a very serious fashion; and encouraged kids at home from school to be kept from gathering in groups.
Cutler went on to talk about testing for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.
“People want to get tested,” Cutler said. “But not everyone can get testing right away, nor needs testing. If you have no symptoms, you don’t need testing now. If you have a mild illness and can self-medicate at home and take care of yourself at home, please stay home and don’t seek medical care. Now clearly, if you get worse, shortness of breath, unable to keep down fluids, severe lethargy, you need to contact health care providers so they can evaluate you in safe conditions. We know the demand for COVID-19 testing continues to exceed capacity, but expanding that capacity remains a high priority.”
Cutler went on to say that about 80% of those who will get infected will have a milder disease that can be handled at home with rest and self-care and won’t need to seek treatment.
“Call your doctor if you think you’re getting worse, it persists, or you are one of those higher risk categories or with underlying medical conditions,” he said. “Please do not show up at the ER unless it is a true emergency. Do not call 911 to request testing for COVID-19. We want people to take these precautions, the hand cleaning, social distancing, et cetera, so that we have fewer cases and that our health care providers are taken care of. Our health care facilities have limited capacities and limited resources. We need to preserve those for those people who need it most.”
To contact Multimedia Reporter Elias Funez, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 530-477-4230.
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