ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – As more and more people in Florida have a positive COVID-19 test, which increases the statewide number above 10,200, not all of these people are yet considered sick. There are many ways for health officials to determine if a person has recovered from respiratory illness and can leave isolation.
The Florida Department of Health publishes positive coronavirus cases twice a day, but these numbers do not indicate how many people no longer have the virus. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the disease will run its course in about two weeks.
The head of health for the Orange County health department in Florida, Dr. Raul Pino, said he had received questions about when coronavirus patients are considered to be recovering.
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Pino explained at a press conference on Friday what it means to be recovering and when someone can leave isolation.
Here’s the process:
- For anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19, there must be at least seven days from the time he started to develop symptoms, said Pino. Most people develop symptoms within seven days of being exposed to the virus, but they can also appear up to 14 days after exposure, according to the CDC.
- Then the patient must go 72 hours without fever. The most common symptoms are fever and a dry cough. Their symptoms should generally decrease.
- Finally, a COVID-19 patient will need to have a coronavirus test twice and a negative test twice within 24 hours.
At this point, Pino said, individuals should be able to safely leave solitary confinement.
Anyone who has not been tested for the virus and is isolated because he has traveled abroad, to certain hot spots in the United States, or has been exposed to someone infected with the virus must self-isolate for 14 days.
According to data from the Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems Science and Engineering, more than 9,445 people in the United States have recovered from the virus.
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