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Local health officials urge you to follow public health recommendations

Southeastern Idaho Public Health
Southeastern Idaho Public Health

SOUTHEAST IDAHO (KIFI/KIDK) - Southeast Idaho Public Health officials report COVID-19 cases in southeast Idaho continue to increase.

With the latest surge in cases, a growing number of people are not getting a prompt contact tracing call from SIPH.

Health officials urge anyone who is awaiting a test result or who receives a positive test result to take their own proactive measures to protect themselves and those around them.

“We are in a tough spot. Everyone here has stepped up and is working hard,” SIPH director Maggie Mann said. “We really need the cooperation of our communities. We need people to choose to take steps to reduce their risk and protect themselves, their loved ones and their communities. That means isolating if they have any symptoms of COVID-19, while they are waiting for test results, and, if positive, letting all of their close-contacts know that they need to isolate right away.”

SIPH asks the public to do the following:

Anyone awaiting a test result should:

  • Stay home and monitor your health – stay away from others in your household whenever possible. Watch for fever, cough, shortness of breath or other symptoms of COVID-19 (sore throat, body aches, chills, loss of taste or smell, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, congestion or runny nose, fatigue, sever headache). Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure.
  • Think about the people you have recently been around, and where you have been.
  • Answer the phone call from your public health office when they reach out to you.

If you test positive you should:

  • Stay home for at least 10 days from the start of your symptoms and 24 hours with no fever without the use of fever reducing medications and other symptoms of COVID-19 are improving.
  • If you do not have symptoms, isolate for 10 days from positive test result.
  • DO NOT visit public places. except to get medical care.
  • Take care of yourself – get rest, stay hydrated.
  • Stay in touch with your healthcare provider – Do not hesitate to seek care in an emergency but call ahead or notify EMS of your diagnosis.
  • Contact those with whom you have had close contact to, and let them know they have been exposed to COVID-19 and need to quarantine for 14 days.

If you had close contact to a confirmed case you should:

  • Stay home for 14 days after your last exposure to that person.
    • However, anyone who has had close contact with someone with COVID-19 and who meets the following criteria does NOT need to stay home.
      • Has diagnosed COVID-19 illness within the previous 3 months and
      • Has recovered and
      • Remains without COVID-19 symptoms (for example, cough, shortness of breath)

SIPH urges you to follow the following prevention methods:

  • Wear cloth face coverings in public places.
  • Practice social distancing (6ft).
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Avoid people who are sick.
  • 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 with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough or sneeze.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cleaning and disinfecting surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs using a disinfecting solution.

If you have additional questions, SIPH has a call center to field questions from the community and is open Monday-Friday 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

You can reach the hotline at (208) 234-5875.

Article Topic Follows: Coronavirus Coverage

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