Saturday, June 3, 2023

First presumptive positive Covid-19 case in New Hanover County [Free read]

Above: The live-streamed press conference from New Hanover County, discussing the first presumptive positive in the county.

WILMINGTON — The novel coronavirus has reached New Hanover County as the first presumptive positive test result has been announced

“New Hanover County Public Health officials have identified the first and only presumptive positive case of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19 in New Hanover County. The person went to their doctor with symptoms on Monday, March 16 and a test was conducted at that time. Isolation protocols were implemented immediately and test results showed a presumptive positive result of COVID-19 today, March 18, 2020. Initial contact tracing indicates that this is a travel-related case,” according to a county press release.

This is the first case in New Hanover County but not in the region, a person tested positive in Brunswick County earlier this week.

“While this is the first case of the novel coronavirus in our community, it is something we’ve been preparing to respond to with our state and local partners,” said New Hanover County Board of Commissioners Chair Julia Olson-Boseman. “Our Public Health team is working closely with this individual to monitor their wellbeing and to make contact with anyone they have had close contact with over the last two weeks to mitigate any potential spread of the virus.”

The individual with Covid-19 has been ordered to isolate themselves and is doing well at their home.

“Our community has already implemented a number of measures that reduce individual risk of COVID-19, and have taken heed of the guidance shared from the state and our local team who has been working on these plans for the last several weeks,” said Olson-Boseman. “It’s important to remain calm and continue practicing social distancing, stay away from crowds and keep six feet between you and others to help keep our community safe and healthy. Stay home if you are able and make sure you are always relying on trusted resources for information.”

The illness itself is not as severe in those under 65-years-old, however, it does pose significant health problems to those older adults and people with underlying health issues.

The release continues, “According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most people with COVID-19 have mild to moderate respiratory illness, with those over 65 or with underlying health issues at higher risk of serious illness, necessitating community guidance to reduce risk to this population. Symptoms can include fever, cough and shortness of breath and most cases are mild in severity. Residents are encouraged to continue prevention measures and practice limited contact with others:

  • Practice social distancing: avoid crowds, gatherings of more than 10 people, and maintain 6 feet of distance from others.
  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water, and for at least 20 seconds each time.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are ill.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
  • Do not reuse tissue after coughing, sneezing, or blowing your nose.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched (like your phone, tablet, countertops and daily work surfaces).
  • Stay home and away from others when you are sick.”

Right now, testing standards are in place and patients must meet the following criteria to even get tested.

  1. Have fever or lower respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness of breath) and close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case within the past 14 days
  2. Have fever and lower respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness of breath) and a negative flu test

“If you are experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19, call your healthcare provider or walk-in clinic before visiting the office to alert staff of symptoms, so they can take appropriate steps to prepare for your visit,” the release states.


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