SIDNEY — The Sidney-Shelby County Health Department has released additional information concerning the first person to test positive for the coronavirus (COVID-19) in Shelby County.
According to Health Commissioner Steve Tostrick, the person is a male in his mid 60’s. The Ohio Department of Health’s website shows the man is hospitalized.
Tostrick said tracking of the person’s recent activities began the day of testing. The health department, in conjunction with the Ohio Department of Health, will determine if any of the person’s close contacts are sick. Those people who are sick will be isolated at their residences and stay in contact with their personal physician. Those who test positive will remain in their homes for 14 days.
The COVID tests are sent to three different laboratories to determine if the person is COVID-19 positive or negative, said Tostrick.
Wilson Health, said Margo O’Leary, director of marketing and communications, works with various labs for testing and also directly with the Ohio Department of Health.
Because of HIPPA, the hospital does not share any patient-related information, said O’Leary.
“The Sidney-Shelby County does not provide testing nor dictate when a doctor can test for COVID-19. The doctor is to use their clinical judgment and the screening process designed by the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) to determine if their patient should be tested. There are limited tests available in Ohio and the entire United States. That is why testing cannot be completed on every patient that has cold symptoms,” said Tostrick.
“If you believe that you have come into contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 or have a fever, cough, and difficulty breathing you should call your primary care provider to see if you qualify for testing,” he said.
The health department has also changed its Facebook page to give updated positive cases in the county.
Wilson Health, said O’Leary, is accepting unopened medical supplies to help battle the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The community has been amazing with donations but we are still in great need of: masks, gloves, face shields, wipes, and hand sanitizers,” said O’Leary.
The Sidney-Shelby County Health Department has been working closely with community partners and is following directions from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, ODH and Gov. Mike DeWine.
For questions related to COVID-19 call the Ohio Department of Health Call Center, 833-4-ASK-ODH 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. The call line is open seven days a week.
Daily press conference
During Thursday’spress conference, Dr. Amy Action, director of the Ohio Department of Health, reported there are 867 positive cases in Ohio. Of those, 223 are in the hospital. There have been 15 deaths in the state.
The COVID-19 virus is in 50 of Ohio’s 88 counties. More than 17,000 Ohioans have been tested. Of those with the virus, 17 percent are healthcare workers, she said. The health department in Toledo has two employees with the virus. The rest of the employees are either in isolation or in quarantine.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4822.