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Guidelines from Gila County Health Department for those who have, or are being evaluated for COVID-19

Be Safe and Keep Other Safe!

• Stay at home except to get medical care. Do not go to work, school, or public areas, and do not use public transportation or taxis.

• Call ahead before visiting your doctor.

• Separate yourself from others in the home.

• Wear a facemask when in the same room with other people and when you visit a healthcare provider.

• Cover your coughs and sneezes.

• Wash your hands and avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

• Avoid sharing household items like dishes, cups, eating utensils, and bedding.

• Monitor your symptoms and seek medical care if your illness is worsening.

* Before going to your medical appointment, call the healthcare provider and tell them that you have, or are being evaluated for, COVID-19.

You will be asked to stay in home isolation:

1) If you have tested positive for COVID-19, you should remain in home isolation for 7 days after your COVID-19 testing OR until 72 hours after your fever and symptoms of acute infection are gone, whichever is longer.

2) If you have a fever and respiratory symptoms and have not tested positive for COVID-19, you should stay home away from others until 72 hours after your fever and symptoms or acute infection are gone.

 

If you life with or have had close contact with someone who has or is being evaluated for COVID-19:

  • Monitor your health starting from the day you first had close contact with the person who has or is being evaluated for COVID-19, and continue for 14 days after you last had close contact with the person.
  • If you do not have any symptoms, you can continue with your daily activities such as going to work, or other public areas, assuring you are abiding by social distancing of 10 feet.
  • Watch for these signs and symptoms:

o Fever. Take your temperature twice a day.

o Coughing.

o Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.

o Other early symptoms to watch for are chills, body aches, sore throat, headache, diarrhea, nausea/vomiting, and runny nose.

  • Have only people in the home who are essential to providing care for the person – other household members should stay in another home or place of residence. If this is not possible, they should stay in another room and be separated from the person as much as possible.
  • Wash your hands and avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
  • Avoid sharing household items like dishes, cups, eating utensils, and bedding
  • Clean all “high-touch” surfaces, such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets, and bedside tables with a diluted bleach solution or a household disinfectant that says “EPA-approved.”

o To make a diluted bleach solution, add 1 tablespoon bleach to 1 quart of water.

 

If you develop fever or any of the symptoms listed:

  • Call your healthcare provider right away.
  •   Before going to your medical appointment, be sure to tell your healthcare provider about your closecontact with someone who is confirmed to have or is being evaluated for COVID-19. This will help thehealthcare provider’s office take steps to keep other people from getting infected.
  •   Ask your healthcare provider to call the Gila County Health Department:

o Monday–Friday 8AM–5PM – call (928) 402-8811 and ask for Communicable Disease;
o After 5PM and on weekends – The Arizona Poison Control System is available to answer questions about COVID-19 from Arizona providers (for testing and patient guidance) and the general public (for testing, isolation, and quarantine guidance) at 1-844-542-8201.

**Current as of 3/25/20. Recommendations are subject to change as the situation evolves.

TESTING:

  •   Due to shortages of supplies, not everyone that wants a test for COVID-19 (Coronavirus) will be tested. These limited supplies will be reserved for severe cases who “meet criteria” set forth by the Arizona Department of Health Services. Also, state and commercial testing sites are experiencing an overload causing these facilities to bottleneck. This prevents those who are acute cases from receiving the results of tests in a timely manner. Currently taking up to 9 days.
  •   Please keep in mind the other severe illnesses that hospitals and clinics are testing for and treating such as pneumonia, emphysema, COPD, cardiovascular disease, cancer, etc. and other contagious illnesses and injuries.
  •   A physician must recommend testing and that is why it is so important to follow these instructions:
    1. If you are experiencing severe symptoms of:
      •   Fever
      •   Cough
      •   Shortness of breath
        •   CALL YOUR PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIAN FIRST BEFORE GOING INTO THEIR OFFICE. Phone numbers are on Page 6 and Page 7
        •   THEY WILL INSTRUCT YOU ON THE PROTOCOL THEY HAVE SET UP FOR YOUR VISIT.
        •   AGAIN, PHONE NUMBERS ARE ON PAGE 6 and Page 7.
    2. IF YOU ARE HAVING SEVERE SYMPTOMS AND NEED TO COME INTO THE ER:

 PLEASE CALL AHEAD TO 928-425-3261, EXT. 1026,, THE STAFF WILL GIVE YOU INSTRUCTIONS AND THEY WILL TAKE PROPER PRECAUTIONS TO CARE FOR YOU.

  1. The Arizona State Public Health Laboratory has devised a testing matrix that physicians are using as a guide. Sometimes this is called “screening” or “meeting criteria” for testing. You will be asked about your travel history 14 days prior to the onset of your symptoms, your exposure to anyone with a CONFIRMED case of Coronavirus, health history, and other questions. The physician will check for fever, signs/symptoms of lower respiratory illness and other lung conditions.
  2. If the physician determines that you “meet criteria,” the Coronavirus test will be administered. This will be done through a nasal swab (nasopharyngeal swab).
 

5. The test will be sent to a state or commercial lab where it will take 7 – 9 days to get the result.

6. You will be asked to stay quarantined (home isolation) until results are back.

7. If the test comes back positive, you will be quarantined for 14 days.

NOTE: Data is indicating that the most vulnerable are the senior population (over the age of 60) and those people with chronic diseases such as respiratory disease, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, cancer, diabetes, etc.

TREATMENT

  •   There is no medication to treat COVID-19. It is a viral infection and has to run its course. Stay in bed, get enough rest, drink plenty of water, etc.
  •   People that are hospitalized due to extreme, severe symptoms have to receive special respiratory care during the illness.
  •   People who are mildly ill with COVID-19 are able to recover at home. Do not leave, except to get medical care. Do not visit public areas. We need to be aware of those who could become seriously ill if exposed to the virus: The elderly and those with compromised immune systems, for example.
  • PRECAUTION AND SLOW DOWN OF THE SPREAD– Help protect the most vulnerable
  •   WASH YOUR HANDS frequently for at least 20 seconds.
  •   Cough/sneeze with your mouth tightly nestled into your elbow or into a tissue tightlyaround your mouth. Wash or sanitize your hands after each event.
  •   Refrain from touching the “T Zone” of your face — eyes, nose, or mouth.
  •   Avoid close contact with sick people.
  •   Clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces often.
  •   Avoid shaking hands or other close contact greetings.
  •   Whenever possible, keep a safe distance from others, 6 – 10 feet.
  •   Stay home when you are sick.
  •   Coronavirus Disease spreads through close personal contact with a sick person.
  •   Symptoms may show up 2-14 days after contact with an infected individual.

FOR THE MOST CURRENT INFORMATION:

**Current as of 3/25/20. Recommendations are subject to change as the situation evolves.

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