* Press release…
– The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and Cook County Department of Public Health (CCDPH) are today announcing that a fourth Illinois patient has tested positive for COVID-19. The tests conducted in Illinois resulted in presumptive positives for COVID-19. The positive test results will have to be confirmed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lab. The individual is a woman in her 70s and is the spouse of the third case – a man in his 70s. This fourth case is quarantined at home and is complying with health officials. Both cases are reported to be in good condition.
Public health officials are working to identify and actively monitor individuals who were in contact with both patients in an effort to prevent additional transmission. Public health officials will reach out to individuals who may have been exposed.
Governor JB Pritzker has requested that hospitals across the state implement additional testing to improve surveillance for COVID-19. Illinois was the first state to provide COVID-19 testing and Gov. Pritzker announced two more IDPH labs in central and southern Illinois that will be able to test specimens this week.
Illinois’ previously confirmed two cases of COVID-19 and both patients made a full recovery.
Symptoms reported among patients have included mild to severe respiratory illness with fever, cough, and difficulty breathing. Right now, the virus has not been found to be spreading widely in the U.S., and the risk to the general public remains low. Public health officials are encouraging the public to not alter their daily routines and remain vigilant about keeping germs from spreading, by covering coughs and sneezes, washing hands with warm soap and water, and staying home when sick.
Easier said than done about that last point. If you don’t have paid sick leave at your job, staying home could mean financial devastation.
Northwest Community Hospital in Arlington Heights confirmed Monday morning a patient who’s tested positive for coronavirus is being treated at the northwest suburban hospital, as a local school district told parents two staffers and their two children were staying home because of exposure to a person who treated someone with coronavirus.
The patient was the third in Illinois to be diagnosed with coronavirus. The hospital issued a statement saying it is following all associated protocol, including examining who the patient may have had contact with and treating the patient in isolation.
The hospital statement said the state is requesting assistance from a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention team and confirmation of the diagnosis from one of its labs.
Researchers who have examined the genomes of two coronavirus infections in Washington State say the similarities between the cases suggest that the virus may have been spreading in the state for weeks.
Washington had the United States’ first confirmed case of coronavirus, announced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Jan. 20. Based on an analysis of the virus’s genetic sequence, another case that surfaced in the state and was announced on Friday probably was descended from that first case.
The two people live in the same county, but are not known to have had contact with one another, and the second case occurred well after the first would no longer be expected to be contagious. So the genetic findings suggest that the virus has been spreading through other people in the community for close to six weeks, according to one of the scientists who compared the sequences, Trevor Bedford, an associate professor at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the University of Washington.
Dr. Bedford said it was possible that the two cases could be unrelated, and had been introduced separately into the United States. But he said that was unlikely, however, because in both cases the virus contained a genetic variation that appears to be rare — it was found in only two of the 59 samples whose sequences have been shared from China, where the virus originated.
* Daily Herald…
In preparation for a possible outbreak, the Illinois Department of Public Health is assessing hospitals throughout the state for available space should more people require care for coronavirus infection. The department also is assessing the availability of personal protective equipment — gloves, masks, gowns, goggles and the like — for health care workers.
Health care providers and their individual hospitals, meanwhile, are preparing themselves by implementing infection prevention protocols, screening patients for symptoms and risk factors, and running drills on their response to a positive diagnosis of COVID-19.
“We assembled a team representing infection prevention, emergency preparedness, supply chain and other departments to ensure our facilities are prepared with ample supplies and support to keep our patients and team members safe,” said Dr. Gary Stuck, chief medical officer of the Downers Grove-based Advocate Aurora Health hospitals.
* This is a very real problem…
A Florida man tested negative for coronavirus but was billed $3,270–so many will avoid testing. We need universal health coverage: It protects all of us. Same for paid sick leave: You want a sick person to stagger to work to prepare your food? My column https://t.co/x0ReCjqLLT pic.twitter.com/kPkauLNCz1
— Nicholas Kristof (@NickKristof) March 1, 2020
*** UPDATE *** Media advisory…
UPDATED: Daily Public Schedule: Monday, Mar. 2, 2020
What: Governor JB Pritzker and Director of Illinois Department of Public Health Dr. Ngozi Ezike to provide update on COVID-19 cases.
Where: Blue Room, Thompson Center, Chicago
…Adding… Watch or listen live…
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- Analysis | The Health 202: Los Angeles is racing to discover the true coronavirus infection rate – The Washington Post
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