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Health district discounting daily check-ins with COVID-19 patients, considering them 'recovered' after 10 days

Posted at 4:30 PM, Jul 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-15 20:48:22-04

The Waco-McLennan County Public Health District announced it is discontinuing its daily check-ins with COVID-19 patients. Instead, persons will automatically be considered recovered 10 days after their symptom onset/ date of collection.

The health district said the change was made "due to the exponential increase in cases.

Until the last week of June, health officials were contacting each of the positive cases daily until they met the criteria for discontinuing isolation.

The health district said it will continue to investigate positive cases with the assistance of the Texas Department of State Health Services to provide proper isolation guidelines and to identify close contacts and potential clusters.

The methodology for reporting active cases has also changed. Active cases were calculated by subtracting the number of recovered and deceased persons from the total number of cases. The language on the daily updates will change from "Recovered" to "Estimated Recovered."

CDC’s guidelines state that anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 must stay in isolation until they meet the following three criteria:

  1. At least 10 days from symptom onset AND
  2. 72 hours of no fever without the use of fever-reducing medication AND
  3. Respiratory symptoms are improving

The Waco-McLennan County Public Health System says those without symptoms should be in isolation for at least 10 days from the date their test was collected.

Close contacts of positive cases should self-quarantine for 14 days from the last day of exposure to a positive case.