New Georgia cases of COVID-19 coronavirus diagnosed

STAFF REPORT :::

The Georgia Department of Public Health reports additional cases of COVID-19 – the illness caused by the newest strain of coronavirus – in multiple counties.

According to a press release issued Saturday, there have been “a number of developments overnight regarding COVID-19 in Georgia.”

The DPH and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have confirmed two additional cases of COVID-19. Testing was done by the CDC prior to the Georgia Public Health Laboratory (GPHL) having the capacity to test for this specific strain of the coronavirus.

One individual is from Cobb County and recently returned from Italy and is isolated at home.

The second individual is from Fulton County and is hospitalized. The source of this individual’s exposure is currently unclear.

Additionally, DPH officials are awaiting confirmatory testing on a presumptive positive test for COVID-19 in a resident of Gwinnett County. The initial testing was completed by GPHL March 6. The individual recently returned from Italy and was self-monitoring at home. They are now isolated at home.

CDC testing has confirmed the presumptive positive test for COVID-19 in a resident of Floyd County. The original testing was done by GPHL March 5. That individual is hospitalized.

“Federal and state officials continue to work closely together to conduct testing and determine the extent of exposure for confirmed cases of COVID-19. The risk to Georgians remains low. We ask Georgians to stay vigilant, utilize best practices to mitigate health risk, and remain calm,” Kemp said.

Toomey stressed the importance of utilizing measures to prevent the spread of illnesses.
“DPH is prepared to mitigate the spread of this virus in our state, and we are aggressively working to identify anyone who may have had contact with these individuals,” said Kathleen E. Toomey, M.D., M.P.H., DPH commissioner. “Despite these new cases, the overall risk of COVID-19 to the general public remains low; but each new case of COVID-19 in Georgia reinforces the fact we should all be practicing basic prevention measures that are extremely effective in limiting the spread of COVID-19 and all respiratory illnesses.”

Preventative measures include:

Wash your hands often 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 cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Governor Brian Kemp and DPH Commissioner Kathleen Toomey M.D., M.P.H. reiterate that the overall risk to the general public remains low.

Officials say there is no evidence of community spread of COVID-19 in Georgia at this time.

If you have recently traveled to areas where there are ongoing outbreaks of COVID-19 and develop fever with cough and shortness of breath within 14 days of your travel, or if you have had contact with someone who is suspected to have COVID-19, stay home and call your health care provider or local health department right away.

Before seeking treatment in a doctor’s office, emergency room, or urgent care center, call and tell them about your recent travel and your symptoms.

For accurate and reliable information about COVID-19, please visit dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirusor cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/index.html.

You may find answers to frequently asked questions at cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/index.html.

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