(Press Release, March 23, 2020)

Below is a news release from Southeastern Idaho Public Health:

Southeastern Idaho Public Health has confirmed two cases of COVID-19 in Bannock County. This brings the total to three case in southeastern Idaho, bringing the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Idaho to 49.

The patients are males in their 30s from Bannock County, who both had a history of travel. They are both at home recovering. The investigation is in its primary stages.

“Protecting and preserving the health and safety of our residents is at the very core of what we do,” said Maggie Mann, SIPH District Director. “We are calling on each of you to follow public health guidance to help protect their families and prevent the virus from spreading. We must all do our part to prevent the spread of the virus.”

Prevention methods include:

• If you are sick, limit contact with others.
• Avoiding people who are sick.
• Washing 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.
• Covering your nose and mouth with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough or sneeze.
• Avoiding 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 believe you have been exposed, make sure to self-isolate. If you need medical attention, please call your healthcare provider in advance of a visit to discuss your symptoms and next steps. Public health does not do any testing for COVID-19 or store testing kits. SIPH’s focus is on slowing the spread of COVID-19, to ensure the protection of our community.

As a reminder, it is still cold and flu season, and you do not need to seek medical attention for a mild respiratory illness such as a cold. However, if you have had close contact with a person with known COVID-19 or have recently traveled to an area with ongoing spread and you develop fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider and ask for instructions about how to seek care. They may order appropriate testing, and samples will be sent to the state lab or to a private lab as needed.

At this time, SIPH does not recommend testing of people who do not have symptoms. Because of the limited number of tests across the nation, there is a need to preserve them for the sickest and those with the highest risk of complications from an infection.

SIPH has opened a call center to field questions from the community and will be open Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. You can reach the hotline at
(208) 234-5875.


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