First coronavirus case reported
in Six-County area
By Robert Stevens
On Tuesday, the Central Utah Public Health Department (CUPHD) announced the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in the health district that includes Sanpete County. The only problem was that there are six counties in the district, and CUPHD wouldn’t disclose where the confirmed individual lives. The health department cited HIPPA medical privacy laws as the reason for not narrowing down the area.
“We are only going to confirm that it is a resident of our health district at this time,” said Mike Grimlie, public information officer for the CUPHD.
The CUPHD includes Sanpete, Sevier, Juab, Millard, Piute and Wayne counties. Out of the six counties, Sanpete has the highest population with Sevier County next in line.
The confirmed case is a male over 60 years old. According to the CUPHD, he is currently recovering in his home. Officials at the CUPHD say he may have been exposed during travel outside the United States.
“The individual followed all the recommendations and protocols to limit exposure by using telemedicine to contact a doctor and coordinate testing with the facility,” said Nate Selin, CUPHD director. “We can’t stress how critical this is in protecting our healthcare workers and other members of the public. If you are symptomatic, we urge you to call your medical provider or hospital rather than just walking into a facility.”
According to health officials, the CUPHD is trying to figure out who the patient might have come into contact with, in order to encourage those people to self-quarantine for 14 days.
“As we expect to see more cases within our health district, we ask for the public’s help in limiting the spread of COVID-19 by adhering to social distancing practices, gathering limitations and personal hygiene as outlined in the governor’s directive,” Selin said.
More info can be found at centralutahpublichealth.org.