What to do IF you Contract COVID-19

Monica Castro, MVA Nurse
There has been a lot of emphasis from the media and authorities regarding COVID-19 prevention and detection. We would like to share what to do if you are diagnosed with COVID-19. While it is not certain when schools will reopen, this information is important because it will still be possible to contract and spread the virus to others after the isolation restrictions are lifted. Please note that following these guidelines will help you recover and prevent the spread of the virus. 
 
This information applies to students and staff: If you are diagnosed with COVID-19, you are always be encouraged to keep in close communication with your health care provider and follow their recommendations, as each person is different and can recover in a different way and in a different timeframe. 
 
  • If diagnosed with COVID-19, the first step is to isolate yourself in your home. You should not leave your home if at all possible. 
  • Inside your home, you should try to isolate yourself from other members of your household by staying in one room and using a separate bathroom if available. 
  • Continue to use preventative measures including covering your mouth when coughing or sneezing, washing hands frequently, wearing a face mask if must go out in public, avoiding touching your face, and avoiding sharing personal or household items such as hair brushes and dishes/utensils.
  • In order to determine when it is safe to return to work or school, the CDC currently has the following guidelines. For full article see https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/steps-when-sick.html:
    • If you do not have a test to determine if you are still contagious, you can leave home after these three things have happened:
      • You have had no fever for at least 72 hours (that is three full days of no fever without the use medicine that reduces fevers) AND
      • Other symptoms have improved (for example, when your cough or shortness of breath have improved) AND
      • At least seven days have passed since your symptoms first appeared
 
    • If you are tested to determine if you are still contagious, you can leave home after these three things have happened:
      • You no longer have a fever (without the use medicine that reduces fevers) AND
      • Other symptoms have improved (for example, when your cough or shortness of breath have improved) AND
      • You received two negative tests in a row, 24 hours apart. Your doctor will follow CDC guidelines.
 
Most importantly, make sure to contact your healthcare provider or nearest hospital immediately in the case that your symptoms worsen. Examples of worsening symptoms can include shortness of breath, chest discomfort, change in mental status (i.e. confusion), or skin discoloration. The current recommendation is to call the doctor or hospital first for instructions, but if not possible either call 911 or go the emergency room.
 
New information is coming out frequently. We encourage you to stay current with CDC recommendations by visiting their website at https://www.cdc.gov/.
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