On 3/2/2020, LEKT called together key individuals to strategize for potential coronavirus impact. There were 26 attendees from various LEKT departments.
PURPOSE: Update departments on COVID-19 current status. Strategize LEKT service delivery.
Identify a workgroup of LEKT professionals, solidifying preparation work in favor of reactionary efforts.
LEKT SOURCES FOR INFORMATION AND RECOMMENDATIONS: Centers for Disease Control (CDC),
Washington State Department of Health (WA DOH), Clallam County DOH, Lower Elwha Health Department (LEHD)
SYMPTOMS: COVID-19 symptoms are similar to flu/cold, varying in severity, with the most common being fever, dry cough, and shortness of breath. Most patients who have COVID-19 do not require hospitalization.
Individuals positive for COVID-19 but who are asymptomatic do not seem to be transmitting the virus but PLEASE NOTE: Those with even very mild cold symptoms can transmit. The recommendation is that anybody experiencing symptoms stay home to prevent spreading the virus, unless severely ill. If you know you are severely ill, don’t ignore the symptoms. Contact your primary care clinic/doctor.
TESTING & HOSPITALIZATION: Testing limitations are not influenced nor can they be changed, by LEKT at this time. The decision to test for COVID-19 is not made at the clinic level.
Unless a patient has underlying conditions and gets admitted to the hospital, they likely will not be tested for COVID-19.
PERSONAL HYGIENE: THE #1 PREVENTATIVE MEASURE IS TO WASH YOUR HANDS.
Sing Happy Birthday twice while scrubbing and before rinsing.
General bar soap works just fine. Antibacterial soap is not required.
Handshakes, fist bumps, hi-fives, and even elbow-bumps are discouraged when greeting others.
Disinfect well-used items such as cell phones, keys, lanyards, bags/purses, etc.
COUGH INTO TISSUE THEN IMMEDIATELY DISCARD IT. Coughing into an elbow retains gems on your clothes.
IF YOU HAVE SYMPTOMS, BUT THINK YOU ARE STILL ABLE TO ATTEND WORK/SCHOOL PLEASE DON’T. If you have symptoms, you CAN spread the virus.
Get the flu vaccine if you haven’t already gotten it. There are still flu vaccines available.
People with underlying respiratory conditions may want to consider receiving an additional flu vaccine.
Stay safe and healthy, so we are able to continue providing much-needed services.
Stock up on household supplies to last your family through an illness or an emergency.
A multi-disciplinary LEKT team continues to meet daily to reevaluate. This team consists of: Emergency Management, Tribal Admin, Infection Control, Community Health, Medical, Tribal Gaming, LEPD, HS/Daycare, Social Services and more.
There could be voluntary/involuntary closures of upcoming events, depending on health and safety. If that happens, don’t be alarmed. Safety is the #1 priority of the Tribe.
Expect consistent updates and recommendations from LEKT regarding COVID-19. We are on it and we are working diligently to get good information to the community.
Thank you for your time and attention,
Keri Ellis, CERT 3/3/2020
Seattle & King County – Public Health Notice
What is novel coronavirus?
Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new virus strain spreading from person-to-person in China and other countries, including the United States. In some instances, cases outside of China have been associated with travelers from China. Health experts are concerned because little is known about this new virus and it has the potential to cause severe illness and pneumonia in some people.
How does novel coronavirus spread?
Health experts are still learning the details. Currently, it is thought to spread: DROPLETS*
- via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
- between people who are in close contact Breath Contact with one another (within about 6 feet). Cough
- Droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
How severe is novel coronavirus?
Experts are still learning about the range of illness from novel coronavirus. Reported cases have ranged from mild illness (like a common cold) to severe pneumonia that requires hospitalization. So far, deaths have been reported mainly in older adults who had other health conditions.
What are the symptoms?
People who have been diagnosed with novel coronavirus have reported symptoms that may appear in as few as 2 days or as long as 14 days after exposure to the virus:
- Difficulty Breathing
Who is at risk for novel coronavirus?
Currently the risk to the general public is low. At this time, there are a small number of individual cases in the U.S. To minimize the risk of spread, health officials are working with healthcare providers to promptly identify and evaluate any suspected cases.
Travelers to and from certain areas of the world may be at increased risk. Although coronavirus originated geographically in Wuhan, China, the disease is not specific to any ethnic group. Chinese ancestry — or any other ancestry — does not make a person more vulnerable to this illness.
How can I protect myself from novel coronavirus?
If you are traveling overseas (to China but also to other places) follow the CDC’s guidance: https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel
Right now, the novel coronavirus has not been spreading widely in the United States, so there are no additional precautions recommended for the general public. Steps you can take to prevent spread of flu and the common cold will also help prevent coronavirus:
- wash hands often with soap and water. If not available, use hand sanitizer.
- avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
- avoid contact with people who are sick.
- stay home while you are sick and avoid close contact with others.
- cover your mouth/nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
Currently, there are no vaccines available to prevent novel coronavirus infections.
How is novel coronavirus treated?
There are no medications specifically approved for coronavirus. Most people with mild coronavirus illness will recover on their own by drinking plenty of fluids, resting, and taking pain and fever medications. However, some cases develop pneumonia and require medical care or hospitalization.
For more information: www.kingcounty.gov/covid – Updated 2/19/2020