First case of COVID-19 confirmed in Richardson County

Community Medical Center in Falls City has confirmed that a patient in Richardson County has tested positive for COVID-19. The patient presented to the emergency department. They are currently under the care of a medical practitioner and are quarantining at home.

Trained public health staff from the Southeast District Health Department are working with the patient to identify how the patient was exposed and to trace contact the patient may have had with others in the community.

All staff that treated the patient in the hospital and the patient’s primary care practice have been contacted and are being monitored, as is standard practice. No staff member is known to have contracted COVID-19, though we will continue to monitor and provide testing as needed. CMC is following the guidelines of the CDC and DHHS related to potential health care workers COVID-19 exposure.

The hospital infection control and cleaning staff are fully trained and equipped to handle these issues, and there are no concerns for lingering contamination or infection of other patients.

Examples of infection control measures include the use of negative air-flow rooms for treatment, HEPA filters for air, use of PPE by staff, thorough cleaning with sanitizing chemicals, removal of potentially contaminated cloth and paper items, and application of the hospital’s medical-grade UV light system, said a statement from Community Medical Center in Falls City.

If you have additional questions, please contact the Southeast District Health Department at 402-274-3993 or contact your primary health care provider’s office or the CMC Administration office at 402-245-6503.

The presence of one COVID-19 case in the community suggests the possibility that more patients will be diagnosed. For your health, please follow these guidelines:
• Practice good hand hygiene, including frequent and thorough hand washing and proper use of hand sanitizer
• Avoid touching your face, including your eyes, nose, and mouth
• Be sure you have all needed medications and supplies on hand as if you were preparing for a severe snowstorm
• Practice social distancing – no closer than 6 feet from others

Anyone in the area who has potentially been exposed to COVID-19 and has a fever, sore throat, cough, or shortness of breath to call before going to any healthcare facility.

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