Who should be tested for the Coronavirus?
If you have a fever (defined as 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or greater), lower respiratory symptoms (cough, wheezing, shortness of breath), and have had a KNOWN exposure to a person with COVID-19, you will more than likely be tested.
If you have a fever and lower respiratory symptoms but there is NO KNOWN exposure to a person with COVID-19, you may still be considered for testing. If you have these symptoms and are a healthcare worker, have traveled outside of the country within the last 2 weeks, have an underlying chronic lung disease, are 65 years or older, or are immunocompromised in any other way, you will probably be tested.
Why aren’t we testing everyone with a fever and cough?
The survival rate for the average healthy adult infected with COVID-19 is very high (approximately 97%). The treatment for COVID-19 in those individuals is what we call “conservative treatment”. Stay home for 2 weeks, stay hydrated, get plenty of rest, and take Tylenol/Motrin as needed for fever.
The test for the Coronavirus is in very short supply. Therefore, we have to make smart decisions on who should be tested.
If you think you should be tested, please, please, please go to your primary care doctor (while wearing a mask) and discuss your symptoms.
If I’m positive for COVID-19, do I really have to stay home, isolated, for 2 weeks?
Yes! Yes, please! As the infected person, you need to rest, stay hydrated, and take Motrin/Tylenol for your fever. Also, the droplets from your sneeze and cough can infect people within a 6 foot radius. We really don’t need to share germs, especially with those who are not at their best health and those who are elderly. So, I’m begging you. Stay home.
Are people overreacting about this?
Yes and no. Sure, we probably shouldn’t be running out of toilet paper, milk, and bread at the grocery stores.
But this virus is a bit unique. This virus can affect anyone within a 6 foot radius of an infected person. Last time I checked, most grocery stores have aisles full of people squeezing past each other, even bumping into each other while reaching for a snack on the top shelf. Once a person is infected, it goes straight to the lungs. Therefore, anyone with COPD, asthma, interstitial lung disease, history of frequent pneumonia infections, or other lung disease are at high risk.
I believe that the reaction to this virus is panicky but more like “panic preparation”. People are panicking in order to figure out what to do with the schools closed for 3 weeks. People are panicking on how to pay their bills while they’re out of work for 3 weeks. And people are panicking on making sure they don’t get sick and pass it on to their loved ones who may not be strong enough to fight it off.
So, are we overreacting? Yes and no.
Kristina, how can you tie in these questions with a biblical story/lesson like you always do?
Well, I always pray for my patients and my staff. Easy enough.
But this sense of panic and preparation really reminds me of the book of Revelation. In this book, John writes letters to various churches on what they are doing right and/or wrong. It also gives us a depiction of the end of times, what to expect in the end, and straight forward instructions (throughout the whole bible) on how to avoid a treacherous eternal ending in hell.
It makes me wonder, “Have I really done all that I can to prepare for this virus? Have I really mentally prepared for what is inevitably coming to my city in NC?” And then I ask myself, “Have I really done all that I can to not only prepare myself for the second coming of Christ, but have I really done all that I can to prepare my family, friends, co-workers, and acquaintances for the second coming of Christ as well?”
If you saw Christ traveling from city to city, casting judgement on who goes to heaven or hell, wouldn’t you prepare quickly? Dare I say even “prepare in a panic”? And if you knew…knew…when He was coming, wouldn’t you tell everyone to prepare as well?
No one knows when the Coronavirus will hit our city. We also don’t know when Christ is coming again. But we do know that it will happen. So, let us all be prepared.
My friends. If you die today, where are you going? If you don’t know, please contact me. I’ll tell you about my Jesus and eternal life in heaven. If you aren’t sure, please contact me. It doesn’t take much to get to heaven. It just takes Jesus. And if you don’t agree that Jesus, heaven, and hell are real, please contact me. I will welcome you into my arms and tell you why they are real.
Are you prepared?
All information about the Coronavirus was obtained from UpToDate.com, the CDC, and the WHO.