Sacramento County announced today that it will shift its effort to community mitigation measures that will slow the spread of COVID-19 in the community, protect those who are most vulnerable to severe illness, and allow our health care system to prepare resources to take care of severely ill patients. These new measures will include cessation of 14-day quarantines and contact tracing for individuals who may have had possible exposure to individuals with COVID-19 but are not showing symptoms.
The following recommendations are effective immediately, and will extend through March 31, 2020:
- Quarantine: With the shift from containment to mitigation, it is no longer necessary for someone who has been in contact with someone with COVID-19 to quarantine for 14 days if they are not showing symptoms. This applies to the general public, as well as health care workers and first responders. However, if they develop respiratory symptoms, they should stay home in order to protect those who are well.
- Sick Persons:
- People should stay home if they are sick.
- Those with cold-like symptoms who can manage their symptoms at home with over-the-counter drugs should do so, regardless of whether they have a cold, the flu, or COVID-19.
- If, however, difficulty breathing and lethargy develops, or symptoms were better and then got worse, they should call their healthcare provider, or urgent care center ahead so they can prepare to take care of them.
- People should only call 911 or go to an emergency department if they believe that they are extremely sick or their life is in imminent danger. Other emergencies are still occurring, and emergency resources must be available to address all of them, not just COVID-19
- Vulnerable Populations: People at higher risk should consider staying home and away from crowded social gatherings where people are within arm’s length, such as parades, conferences, sporting events and concerts.
- Age: Risk of severe disease from COVID-19 escalates as age increases. Persons over age 80 are in the highest risk category.
- Underlying Conditions: People with chronic health conditions such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, heart disease, or lung diseases such as COPD, as well as those with severely weakened immune systems are at high risk of complications.
- Workplaces: Workplaces and businesses may consider implementing telecommuting and teleconferencing for their employees, where appropriate and feasible.
- Schools: Schools that have a COVID-19 exposure or case should be in close collaboration with the local health department and County Office of Education regarding appropriate next steps.
- Masks: Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.
- CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.
- Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a healthcare facility).
Currently, laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Sacramento County stand at 10 people with one recovered, including an elementary school-aged student in Elk Grove, whose test came back positive today.