COVID-19 reports lack specifics

  • COVID-19 Update
    COVID-19 Update

The Georgia Department of Health (DPH) reported nine confirmed cases of COVID-19 and no virus related deaths in Fannin County as of Monday, April 6 at noon.

DPH has reported 7,314 confirmed cases, 1,332 hospitalizations and 229 deaths statewide.

The department is unable to provide a number of people who have recovered from the virus because “trying to quantify how many people have recovered is too dynamic a number to accurately track,” Nancy Nydam with DPH said.

The North Georgia Health District will not release information regarding individual cases in Fannin County because of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), according to Public Information Officer Jennifer King.

“HIPAA prevents us from addressing any specific cases, but considering the new coronavirus is now spreading in Georgia, we should all assume we could come into contact with COVID-19 or someone who is infected with the virus anywhere at any time,” King said. “Even if we could provide more information about people who have been tested positive with COVID-19 or where they are located and where they’ve been, it would only give residents a false sense of security to think that as long as they avoid this person or that place, they will not be infected.

“Cases that have been tested do not represent everyone in our communities who may carry this virus. The virus can be transmitted by people who don’t yet have symptoms and may not even know themselves they are infected.”

King also explained that most people who are infected with COVID-19 have mild to moderate symptoms such as fever, dry cough and/or fatigue.

“They should NOT go to the doctor but stay home, isolate themselves from others and treat their symptoms with over the counter cough and cold medicines until after symptoms have passed and they have been fever-free without the aid of medication for at least three days,” she said. “If symptoms worsen, then a healthcare provider should be called and they will recommend testing or treatment, depending on a person’s symptoms and health condition, and will make any necessary referrals. For anyone who has difficulty breathing, call 911.”

King suggested following the following guidelines from DPH and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

•Stay at home if at all possible;

•Avoid gatherings of more than 10 people and practice social distancing by maintaining 6 feet of physical separation from others at all times;

•Wash your hands frequently with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer;

•Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands;

•Avoid close contact with people who are sick;

•Stay home when you are sick;

•Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash; and,

•Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.