March 9, 2020–12:04 p.m.
According to Andrea Pitts, Director of Marketing and Public Relations at Redmond Regional Medical Center:
Redmond Regional Medical Center has protocols in place to care for patients with infectious diseases, and we have been working diligently to ensure we are prepared for potential issues related to COVID-19. Last night, Redmond Regional Medical Center was notified that we have a patient who tested positive for COVID-19. We are following infection prevention protocols for COVID-19 patients, including isolation, to help ensure the safety of our colleagues, patients, and visitors, and we continue to work closely with the CDC and health department.
As part of our preparations for coronavirus, we have been reinforcing infection prevention protocols, and last week we implemented new screening procedures at hospital entrances as a proactive measure. We have positioned supplies at points of entry so that any potential symptomatic patient who arrives can be properly masked and immediately isolated to protect our colleagues and other patients.
Meanwhile Governor Brian Kemp says 34 cruise ship passengers will be quarantined at Dobbins Air Force Base in Marietta.
“I have learned that thirty-four Georgians and additional American citizens from the eastern United States who are currently on the Grand Princess cruise ship off the California coast will be securely transferred to Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Marietta, Georgia,” the governor said. “These passengers will undergo testing and be quarantined for possible exposure to COVID-19. They are expected to arrive at Dobbins late Monday, March 9 or early Tuesday, March 10.”
The Georgia Department Health says a woman being treated for coronavirus COVID-19 is from Polk County, not Floyd County as previously reported.
A 46-year old woman tested positive on Tuesday and the preliminary positive test was confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday.
Officials say the woman had recently traveled to Washington DC.
On Monday at 7:35 a.m., Floyd CEO Kurt Stuenkel and Floyd’s Environmental Safety Officer/Emergency Preparedness Coordinator Ben Rigas will be guests on WRGA’s First News with Tony McIntosh to give an update.
According to the latest information from GDPH:
Currently, there are five confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Georgia – three in Fulton County, one in Polk County (previously reported as Floyd County) and one in Cobb County. And, confirmatory tests by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are pending on two presumptive positive tests – one is a resident of Gwinnett County, the other is the above Fulton County resident tested at GPHL on Saturday.
The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) is closely monitoring an outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a novel (new) coronavirus (COVID-19) first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China in December 2019, and regularly coordinating with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The outbreak continues to grow in China and cases have been identified in a growing number of other international locations, including the United States.
There is now community (person to person) spread in other countries outside of China. There are ongoing investigations to learn more about the virus, how it is transmitted, and how to prevent the spread of disease.
Symptoms of COVID-19 may resemble the common cold or seasonal flu, which is a far greater risk this time of year. The best way to prevent infection with any respiratory virus is to use the same preventative strategies used during a normal cold and flu season: get a flu shot, wash hands regularly, cover coughs and sneezes, and stay home when experiencing symptoms of illness until they resolve. It is important to remember that viruses cannot target people from specific populations, ethnicities or racial backgrounds and this type of stigma should be avoided. For more about stigma related to COVID-19 and how to prevent it, please see: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/related-stigma.html.
Persons who have traveled from affected countries/areas in the past 14 days and have a fever, cough, or difficulty breathing should seek medical care, and should contact their healthcare provider and inform them of their travel history before going in.
DPH is advising healthcare providers statewide to be alert for patients who have traveled from affected countries/areas and present with a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness. The Department disseminated a detailed medical advisory to healthcare providers about COVID-19 reporting, testing, specimen collection and healthcare infection control recommendations for potential COVID-19 cases.
Healthcare providers who suspect COVID-19 infection in a patient should report them immediately to DPH by calling 1-866-PUB-HLTH (1-866-782-4584) and ask for a Medical Epidemiologist.