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Web exclusive, November 30, 2020
Information on COVID-19

COVID-19 Local Updates Fall/Winter 2020
Click here to see the full COVID-19 Local Updates Fall/Winter 2020.

The following contributed to this article: Charles Zelnick, MD, Island Family Medicine; Tara Perez, Practice Manager, Blue Hill Family Medicine; and Rya Trundy, Practice Manager, Island Family Medicine.

Exposure and Testing (test 5-14 days after exposure) A negative test doesn’t remove quarantine requirement.

If you have been exposed to someone who has Covid-19:

Exposure Definition: You had close contact (within 6 feet for 15 minutes or more over a 24 hour period) with a COVID-19 case while they were symptomatic or within 48 hours before their symptoms started, or:

You live with someone who feels fine, but tested positive for Covid-19;

You provided care at home to someone who is sick with COVID-19;

You had direct physical contact with the person (hugged or kissed them);

You shared eating or drinking utensils;

They sneezed, coughed, or somehow got respiratory droplets on you.

Yes, you were exposed. You need to quarantine at home for 14 days even if your test was negative, in case it is a false negative.

Testing after an exposure—Should not happen until at least 5 days after exposure—but symptoms can still occur up to day 14. This is why you must quarantine for the full 14 days after a direct exposure.

For trusted information about COVID-19 go to the Maine CDC web site: maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/infectious-disease/epi/airborne/coronavirus/index.shtml.

Quarantine definition:

People in quarantine should stay home, separate themselves from others, monitor their health, and follow directions from their state or local health department. Call your primary care doctor’s office if you have any questions or concerns.

This means:
No stores;
No banks;
No work;
No drive throughs;

STAY HOME;
Have outside friends/neighbors/family drop needs off outside of your home for you.

Stay at home to help slow the spread advice: For the next month, we should all try to stay at home as much as possible.

DO YOUR PART TO SLOW THE SPREAD OF THE CORONAVIRUS. If we all work together, we can shut this down on the Island in 2-3 weeks.

Over 40% of the time the virus is spread by people who do not know they have it, or do not feel sick. Even if you feel fine you can be a danger to others if you are carrying the virus.

Even if you are young, or otherwise healthy, you are at risk and your activities can increase the risk for others. It is critical that you do your part to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Follow the 3 Cs, avoid:
Closed spaces;
Crowded places;
Close contacts.

Work or engage in schooling FROM HOME whenever possible.

AVOID SOCIAL GATHERINGS. If you must be in a group, it should be outdoors, 6 feet apart, and everyone should wear a mask.

Bars, churches, indoor athletics/gyms are especially a risk for infection clusters.

FOR HOLIDAY ADVICE: please check the CDC website: cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays.html.

(or Google “CDC Covid Holidays”)

When possible, USE DRIVE-THRU, PICKUP, OR DELIVERY OPTIONS.

DO NOT VISIT nursing homes or retirement or long-term care facilities unless to provide critical assistance.

PRACTICE GOOD HYGIENE:
Wash your hands, especially after touching any frequently used item or surface;
Avoid touching your face;
Sneeze or cough into a tissue, or the inside of your elbow;
Disinfect frequently used items and surfaces as much as possible.
EVERYONE should Wear a mask in public to prevent spread of infection.
“My mask protects you; Your mask protects me.”