The following press release has been circulated to families from the Dickinson County Health Department on November 2, 2020.
The Dickinson County Health Department is experiencing a sharp increase of COVID19 cases. The count has increased by 55 cases in the last week.
In many cases, the exact source of infection cannot be identified and evidence shows that several cases may be the result of infections acquired during small and large gatherings. This has resulted in many close contacts.
The Dickinson County Health Department, is experiencing a high workload as a result of increased positive cases. The health department will attempt to contact all newly diagnosed individuals in a timely manner, however, that may be occasionally delayed.
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) is unable to assist health departments with notifications, as previously done, due to KDHE being overwhelmed with the large case increase across the state.
If you test positive for Covid-19 the following steps should be taken:
Isolate yourself in your house. Isolation means that you should not come in contact with anyone, should not leave your house, and should not allow visitors to enter your house. Isolation should last at least 10 days from the date the symptoms appear, or if there are no symptoms from the date the laboratory test is performed.
Consider isolating yourself from your other household members, where possible. Transmission within the household is very common, but it may be prevented if sick individuals or those with a positive coronavirus test immediately isolate themselves in a different part of the house and have no direct contact with other household members.
Make a list of everyone that you had close contact with (10 minutes within 6 feet) starting two days before symptoms appeared; or if not exhibiting symptoms, two days before the date the laboratory test was performed. Contact each individual and tell them that they have been exposed to the virus and they need to remain in quarantine in their home for 14 days from the date they were exposed. Individuals in quarantine should not leave their house, except for emergencies; and should not go to work or school. If individuals in quarantine develop one or more COVID-19 symptoms they should contact a healthcare provider or health department and be tested for COVID-19.
If you have severe symptoms immediately call your primary care provider and follow their directions. DO NOT GO TO THE DOCTOR’S OFFICE OR THE EMERGENCY ROOM unless you are instructed to do so by a healthcare provider. Always call ahead.
Individuals should take the following precautions to protect themselves and reduce the spread of COVID-19:
Avoid close contact with other individuals outside your household. Close contact is defined as contact within 6 feet that lasts 10 minutes or more.
Always wear a mask when in a public place.
Avoid large gatherings of people.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Individuals that develop one or more COVID 19 symptoms should not attend school or go to work. They should contact a healthcare provider or health department to be tested.
COVID-19 Symptoms include:
Fever (above 100.4 F)
Lower respiratory illness (cough, shortness of breath, or difficulty breathing)
Change or loss of smell or taste
Congestion or runny nose
Nausea or vomiting
Diarrhea without an alternate more likely diagnosis
If you have any questions please call the Dickinson County Health Department at (785- 263-4179)