The Effingham County Health Department reported Monday 14 new positive cases of COVID-19. The department is still investigating whether these individuals have had contact with known COVID-positive cases.
Positive case demographics are as follows: One male and one female in their teens, two females in their 20s, one male in his 30s, one male and one female in their 40s, one male in his 50s, two females in their 60s, two males and one female in their 70s, one male in his 80s.
“Isolation” is the term used when a COVID-positive person is separated from others to prevent illness from spreading. Persons with COVID disease must isolate for a minimum of 10 days from the first day symptoms appear. During this time, health department staff members make contact with persons in isolation to see if symptoms are getting worse and to see if these persons are in need of assistance. Assistance may include medical needs, grocery pick up/delivery, medication delivery, or other items. Persons in isolation may not leave their home.
According to the health department, 339 are in isolation and 258 have recovered from the virus. In addition, 8,094 people have been tested with 599 positive.
“Quarantine” is the term used when a person exposed to a COVID-positive case (a close contact) is separated from others to monitor their health for development of symptoms. It is necessary to quarantine close contacts as soon as possible because if they have the virus, they can be infectious for up to 48 hours before symptoms arise. The quarantine period for a close contact is 14 days. Health department staff members also make contact with persons in quarantine to check on their health and to see if their needs are being met.
The department said in a new release the impact of COVID is overwhelming and is consuming a significant portion of the health department’s resources. The health department asks the community to be patient when leaving messages; calls will be returned as soon as they can. If urgent care is required, call 911 immediately.
The department urges residents to wear a mask, keep your distance, wash your hands, stay home if you’re sick, and stop gathering in large groups.