The North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH) today confirmed four additional cases of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in residents from Cass, Ward and Burleigh counties. All the individuals have a travel history to impacted areas. So far in North Dakota, 253 individuals have been tested, 248 were negative and 5 are positive.
The individual who tested positive for COVID-19 from Cass County is a woman in her 20s and the individual from Ward County is a man in his 60s. The individuals who tested positive from Burleigh County were a man in his 50s and a women in her 20s. None of the four individuals are hospitalized and all are self-isolating at home.
“This increase in COVID-19 cases underscores the importance of exercising personal responsibility and following the CDC and White House recommendations for social distancing,” said Gov. Doug Burgum. “This is especially important on St. Patrick’s Day, when many are accustomed to going out to celebrate with friends. We all have a role to play in slowing the spread of coronavirus.”
“We anticipate there will be additional North Dakotans who test positive for COVID-19 in the coming days and weeks, we urge residents to prepare, not panic, and to follow social distancing recommendations,” said State Health Officer Mylynn Tufte. “Take steps such as ensuring you have materials on hand to self-isolate for two weeks or explore whether there are options to telecommute. Individuals should follow the presidential guidelines to stop the spread of COVID-19.”
Gov. Doug Burgum, Tufte and state health officials strongly recommend North Dakotans to follow the guidelines released by the White House on Monday to slow the spread of coronavirus, including:
- Stay home and don’t go to work if you feel sick.
- Practice good hygiene: wash your hands, avoid touching your face and cover coughs and sneezes.
- If someone in the household has tested positive for coronavirus, keep the entire household at home.
- Older individuals and those with underlying health conditions should stay away from other people.
- Work from home when possible.
- Avoid social gatherings of more than 10 people.
- Avoid eating or drinking in bars, restaurants and food courts – use drive-thru, pickup or delivery options.
- Avoid discretionary travel, shopping trips and social visits.
Health officials also ask individuals returning from traveling on a cruise ship or individuals returning from skiing in Colorado to self-isolate for two weeks and self-report on the NDDoH website.
Symptoms of COVID-19 in people who have been exposed can include fever, cough and shortness of breath. The symptoms may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after exposure. Reported illnesses have ranged from people with little to no symptoms to people being severely ill and dying. Individuals who think they may have COVID-19 but have minor symptoms should self-isolate at home. Individuals seeking medical attention should call before they go in.