COVID-19 Positive Case Reporting Process
COVID-19 Positive Case Reporting Process
Some residents have asked The Landings Association (TLA) about rumors of potential cases of COVID-19 coronavirus in The Landings. The Health Director of the Coastal Health District advised us that at present, Georgia is not releasing the names of persons confirmed to have COVID-19 to any entities, including, but not limited to, 911 centers, EMS, physicians, etc. Although HIPAA regulations are somewhat relaxed during a declared emergency such as the COVID-19 pandemic, State Leadership has determined Georgia will not share names of affected individuals. Therefore, TLA does not have access to data that identifies an individual or address.
We learned that the majority of tests are conducted for submitting physicians by private laboratories. If a result is positive, the laboratories are required under law to report the result to the Department of Public Health, who then sends the case to our Coastal Health District. Local health authorities generally are not notified of positive results that are confirmed in another state, even if the person is a Georgia resident.
When the Coastal Health District receives a positive test result, their epidemiology team immediately interviews the patient to determine possible points of contact with known cases, travel history, date of symptom onset, and to learn of those persons with whom the patient may have had significant exposure.
TLA is operating under the premise that COVID-19 already exists (or will soon exist) in our community. To that end, it is imperative that all residents and their guests, especially those who have recently travelled, operate as though you are carriers and that you can easily pass this virus along to others. That means being vigilant about social distancing, disinfecting high-touch areas frequently, and thoroughly washing your hands with soap and water. People who are in the high-risk categories, as well as those who are not, should be equally aware and socially responsible for the health and well-being of themselves and others.
TLA does not have the authority, nor is it our role, to impose COVID-19 screening at the gate or denial of guest access as has been requested by some residents. However, please recognize that, as a single-family detached community, there is inherent social distancing from our gates to a visitor’s destination. In other words, there is no “unavoidable social interaction” resulting from access.
If you have travelled recently to high risk countries, or places such as New York City, you are strongly encouraged to self-quarantine for 14 days upon your return. Please do not wander around the community under the assumption that you’ve had no exposure.
Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms should assume they have it and immediately seek medical advice, and self-quarantine as required under Governor Kemp’s March 23 Executive Order. Kemp’s order includes a shelter in place mandate for those most at risk for adverse complications for COVID-19, including those in long-term care facilities, those receiving cancer treatments, those with chronic lung disease, and those who have or may have a positive COVID-19 test. The Department of Public Health will enforce this Executive Order with support from the Public Safety Department. According to Chatham County Police Chief Hadley, local law enforcement is tasked with developing an operations plan to effectuate the order.
The Georgia Department of Public Health has established a new COVID-19 Hotline (844-442-2681) that anyone can call for information or concerns about this coronavirus. Additionally, to stay up-to-date with the latest on COVID-19, you can register to receive email updates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) by clicking here.
This article was originally published by The Landings Association on their website. Visit landings.org to read the original article. https://landings.org/news/2020/03/26/covid-19-positive-case-reporting-process