Health officials: Possible third coronavirus case in Georgia

Health officials are investigating a possible new coronavirus case in Georgia. 

On February 29, a 46-year-old female went to Floyd Medical Center's Emergency Care Center in Rome with flu-like symptoms. Hospital officials said she didn't meet the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Georgia Department of Public Health (GDPH) criteria for COVID-19 testing, so she was treated and released. 

The patient started feeling worse and returned to the hospital a few days later on Tuesday. Hospital officials said she again didn't meet coronavirus testing criteria but was admitted due to her worsening condition. They then placed her in isolation. 

After "adamant urging" from the doctor caring for her and the district health director, the CDC and GDPH finally authorized a COVID-19 test. That preliminary test came back positive. 

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Now, the hospital is waiting on the results from a confirmation test from the CDC. 

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The hospital said public health officials have advised them to notify caregivers who treated the patient prior to her being put in isolation. 

"In addition, although the risk of exposure is low, Floyd has made the decision to proactively notify all patients who may have had contact with any of these caregivers or who may have been in the ER at the time the patient was present in order to instruct them on next steps and address concerns," the hospital said in a news release Friday morning. 

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The hospital also provided several tips on preventing the spread of coronavirus:

  • Wash hands with soap and water frequently
  • Avoid touching your face (mouth, nose, eyes)
  • Stay home when you are sick until the illness is resolved
  • Cover coughs and sneezes and washing hands afterward
  • Wipe down frequently touched surface, including cell phones, door knobs, light switches,
  • Stay five to six feet away from others who are coughing or ill