The Health Department receives information on a confirmed positive COVID-19 case, many processes go into action. First, the Community Health Nurse will speak directly with the patient or the delegate that the patient assigns. The patient is told to self-isolate at home until seven days from the time symptoms began AND 3 days fever-free without fever-reducing medication, AND symptoms are improving. All THREE of those must be happening to be released from isolation.
When the initial positive lab is reported it is then submitted into the state platform and reflected on the ISDH website. During the initial interview, it may be found that the patient actually resides in a bordering county. This then requires the patient to be counted for that County, accounting for the change in the daily count on ISDH website.
Next, any people that have direct contact with the patient will be contacted to make them aware they have been in contact with a person that has tested positive. The nurse will remind those people of the symptoms and have them self-quarantine at home for 14 days from the last day of contact with the infected person. Close contacts may be quarantined longer than the infected person due to the amount of time it takes to incubate.
Close contacts are those people who have been within 6 feet of a COVID-19 positive person for 10 minutes or longer.
If no symptoms develop after 14 days, the person that had contact with the COVID-19 positive person is no longer considered to be at-risk.
The employer of the COVID-19 positive person will be contacted as well. That employer will be told to the business that they need to inform those that have had immediate contact with the COVID- 19 positive patient. Those with direct contact need to self-quarantine at home for 14 days. After 14 days, the person could go back to work if the person is not showing symptoms.