Winnebago County has seen its first reported case of coronavirus and now health officials are concerned that there may be more out there who have not reported to health officials. Allison Rice, RN and Clinical Manager at the Winnebago County Public Health Department says you should look for a heavy maybe even tight chest feeling, shortness of breath, coughing, and a low grade fever of 100 degrees.
Masks are essential according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC because COVID-19 is spread through droplets in breath from both coughing and breathing. By limiting access to new hosts through wearing masks, along with the general other rules of prevention, the virus can be contained and quarantined.
Rice stated that the current case is taking steps not to spread the virus.
Health officials remain concerned because there may be unreported cases with very mild symptoms. Approximately 80% of Iowans infected with COVID-19, will experience only a mild to moderate illness. Most mildly ill north Iowans do not need to go to their healthcare provider or be tested to confirm they have COVID-19. Sick residents must stay home and isolate themselves from others in their house. This means isolating yourself in a bedroom with a bathroom that only the ill individual will use. Stay home and isolate from others in the house until:
- You have had no fever for at least 72 hours (that is three full days of no fever without the use of medicine that reduces fevers)
- other symptoms have improved (for example, when your cough or shortness of breath have improved)
- at least 7 days have passed since your symptoms first appeared.
If you think you may need healthcare, call first. Your provider can assess whether you need to be seen in the office or if you can recover at home. There may also be options for you to talk to a medical provider from home using technology.