COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Information for Patients

Last updated: March 24, 2020

There is now an option for drive thru testing for uninsured people in Snohomish County. If you go to the Snohomish County Health District website at https://www.snohd.org/503/Drive-Thru-Testing-Available-by-Appointm. This will give you all the information you need to know about making an appointment for testing.

CRITERIA
If meet the criteria you should make an appointment. You may be eligible for testing if you are:

  • Experiencing symptoms (cough, fever of at least 100.4, sore throat and/or shortness of breath) AND
    • Working in health care, public safety, or critical infrastructure like grocery stores, restaurants, shelters, gas stations, public utilities, child care, or correctional facilities OR
    • 60 years of age or older OR
    • Someone with underlying medical conditions or a weakened immune system OR
    • Currently pregnant.

Patients: Contact your healthcare provider by phone (Lahai Health 206-363-4105) before coming to a clinic or hospital. You may be tested if you meet the following criteria:

  • Experiencing symptoms (cough, fever of at least 100.4, sore throat and/or shortness of breath) AND
    • Working in health care, public safety, or critical infrastructure like grocery stores, restaurants, shelters, gas stations, public utilities, child care, or correctional facilities OR
    • 60 years of age or older OR
    • Someone with underlying medical conditions or a weakened immune system OR
    • Currently pregnant.

From the Department of Health, March 6, 2020

The following resources should be used by patients who test positive for COVID-19 or who are suspected to have COVID-19 infection, who were potentially exposed to someone with confirmed coronavirus disease (COVID-19), and who have symptoms of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and have not been around anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19.

Patients who test positive for COVID-19 or who are suspected to have COVID-19 infection and who are not hospitalized should receive information on management of isolation in the community. READ PDF

What to do if you were potentially exposed to someone with confirmed coronavirus disease (COVID-19) READ PDF

What to do if you have symptoms of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and have not been around anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 READ PDF

Coronavirus Prevention

CDC recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • 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 using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.
    • CDC does NOT recommend that people who are well wearing a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.
    • Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a healthcare facility)
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • For information about handwashing, see CDC’s Handwashing website CDC’s Handwashing
  •  CDC does have specific guidance for travelers

Steps to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 if you are sick:

  • Stay home except to get medical care
  • Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home
  • Call ahead before visiting your doctor
  • Wear a facemask
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes
  • Clean your hands often
  • Avoid sharing personal household items
  • Clean all “high-touch” surfaces every day
  • Monitor your symptoms

Symptoms

Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness for confirmed COVID-19 cases. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure:

  • Fever over 100.4 F
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sore throat

How does it spread?

Current understanding about how the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) spreads is largely based on what is known about similar coronaviruses.

Person-to-person spread

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
  • Respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

Spread from contact with infected surfaces or objects

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

Can someone spread the virus without being sick?

  • People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest).
  • Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this occurring with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is coronavirus?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses, some causing respiratory illness in people and others circulating among animals. Rarely, animal coronaviruses can evolve and infect people and then spread between people. Previous coronavirus outbreaks have included severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) believes the risk to the American public of becoming infected with this COVID-19 is currently low.

How does it spread?

Although we have a lot to learn about this virus, it appears to spread like other respiratory viruses—by people with the infection coughing and sneezing. These droplets are inhaled by other people or moved to the eyes, nose or mouth by contaminated hands.

What are the symptoms of this infection?

Fever, cough, sore throat, and, in some cases, difficulty breathing. In many cases, it presents a lot like the flu.

Should I be concerned about getting this infection?

The risk to people in the United States is currently low. The first cases originated in mainland China, however, COVID-19 has spread to many countries in Asia and Europe and the United States.

Who needs to get tested for COVID-19?

Currently, the CDC recommends that only people with a combination of symptoms and risk factors need testing. If you have fever and symptoms of lower respiratory illness such as cough and difficulty breathing AND you have traveled internationally within the last 14 days of becoming ill, or you have a higher risk for complications from severe respiratory infections (age 60+, have a chronic medical condition, or are pregnant), you should be tested. You should also be tested if you have symptoms and had close contact with a person who was ill and is being investigated for the virus.

Click below to launch the Swedish website and their online assessment tool

Are there any people with this infection in our area?

Yes. For the most updated information, please visit  Public Health – Seattle & King County websites.

Should I be worried about getting infected with COVID-19 at a health clinic?

No. The risk to anyone living in the United States remains low. All hospitals and clinics have protocols and systems in place to keep all patients, visitors and healthcare workers safe.

What is Lahai Health doing about COVID-19?

Lahai Health has protocols in place to assess the risk for someone presenting to a clinic with this infection. People with cold- or flu-like symptoms are being asked to wear a mask and also about travel history in the prior 14 days. People who we feel might have the virus are not being seen in the clinic. They are being directed to isolate at home unless their symptoms require hospitalization.

Is there anything I need to do to keep myself, my family and my friends safe?

The most important steps to take are the same as for every cold and flu season: Wash your hands frequently. Stay home when feeling ill. If you experience symptoms, call your provider’s office. They will help you determine if you need to be seen and provide you with instructions for seeking medical care.

Where can I learn more about COVID-19?

For more information on COVID-19, visit Public Health – Seattle & King County and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

If you still have questions or need to talk to a provider:

Please call 206.363.4105.  A recorded message will help you reach a provider.