Cases in St. Joseph County =

Worried about COVID-19? Don’t run to the ER.

Most won’t need to be tested for COVID-19.

Like many places, Three Rivers Health has developed our own screening for COVID-19 to make testing more easily and quickly available in our communities. However, there are strict guidelines (set by the CDC) for who should be tested.

In line with CDC recommendations, we are screening all people who seek care in our hospitals and clinics who have COVID-19 symptoms and whose travel history suggests they may have been exposed, while testing for other common respiratory infections. If a person meets CDC screening criteria, we are following traditional quarantine and isolation procedures while confirmatory tests are performed.

If you’re experiencing symptoms you think may be related to COVID-19, call your doctor first to determine if you can or should be tested.

If you’re feeling sick right now, you may be understandably worried about having COVID-19. But it’s important to stay calm, avoid rash decisions and pay attention to your symptoms. If you’re worried about having COVID-19, skip the ER or urgent care clinic and call your Primary Care Physician instead.

Call Your PCP, FIRST – Here’s Why!

Symptoms of COVID-19 include those similar to a COLD or FLU with a fever, dry cough, and shortness of breath. Cold and Flu symptoms can also range from a mild cough to severe pneumonia. It is really important that we pay attention to the symptoms.

Symptoms of a COLD include:

  • Cough
  • Mild Fever
  • Runny Nose
  • Sneezing/Stuffy Nose
  • Sore Throat

Symptoms of the FLU include:

  • Aches/Chils
  • Chest Discomfort
  • Cough
  • Extreme Fatigue
  • Headache
  • High Fever
  • Nausea/Diarrhea (most common in children)

If you’re experiencing symptoms you think may be related to COVID-19 , contact your primary care physician. From the phone, they can assess your symptoms, understand your travel history (or contact with those who have traveled) and recommend the appropriate next steps.

When should I go to the ER?

If you’re self-quarantined, be sure to keep an eye on your symptoms and call your doctor if they worsen. He or she can help you determine what to do next. If you develop any of the Emergency Warning Signs for COVID-19, it’s important to seek care immediately.

Emergency Warning Signs include:

  • Difficulty Breathing or Shortness of Breath
  • Persistent Pain or Pressure in the Chest
  • Bluish Lips or Skin
  • Sudden Confusion

While COVID-19 is understandably concerning, we can work together to slow and prevent its spread and keep our families, friends and neighbors healthy.

“Be compliant with the recommendations on social isolation. They are the only tool we have available today to stop this outbreak.” – Otavio Pereira-Rodrigues, MD – Three Rivers Health Infection Control

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