Dickinson County gets first confirmed case of COVID-19

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FILE – In this Wednesday, March 11, 2020 file photo, a technician prepares COVID-19 coronavirus patient samples for testing at a laboratory in New York’s Long Island. Wide scale testing is a critical part of tracking and containing infectious diseases. But the U.S. effort has been plagued by a series of missteps, including accuracy problems with the test kits the CDC sent to other labs and bureaucratic hurdles that slowed the entrance of large, private sector labs. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

SPIRIT LAKE, Iowa (KCAU) – Health officials have announced the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Dickinson County.

The Iowa Department of Public Health said that the individual is in isolation and receiving treatment.

Lakes Regional Healthcare Director of Population and Public Health Brandon Rohrig said that they don’t believe it will be the last case, so they are asking everyone to make prevention a priority by doing the following.

Washing hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds each time.

  • Covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue or elbow/upper arm.
  • Staying home when ill.
  • Practicing social distancing, staying at least 6 feet away from others whenever possible.

About 80% of people infected with the corornavirus will only experience it at a mild or moderate illness and won’t need to be seen by their healthcare provider, needing only to stay home and isolate themselves. They are asked to isolate themselves until they haven’t had a fever in the last 3 days, their symptoms improve, and 7 days have passed since the symptoms appeared.

“We have been preparing for this day for some time as a medical community, and we feel as equipped as possible to weather this storm,” said Dickinson County Board of Health Chair Zachary Borus, MD, MPH. “Thank you for all of your efforts to keep our community safe and for all your sacrifices in this difficult time. Please remember to stay home unless it is essential that you go out, check in remotely on friends and family, and keep yourselves safe and healthy. We will continue to be transparent in our communication with the community.”

Anyone with symptoms; fever, cough, or shortness of breath, or who have questions can call Lakes Regional Healthcare’s COVID-19 Call Center at 712-336-6696. Health professionals will be able to assess whether you need to be seen or if you can manage at home.

For up-to-date information on COVID-19 in Iowa, visit the IDPH website.

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