WICHITA COUNTY (KFDX/KJTL) — City and county officials said residents need to be prepared but not panic after announcing the first confirmed case of the novel coronavirus in Wichita County Wednesday morning in a special press conference.
The 64-year-old resident is now in isolation at home after testing positive for the virus.
While detailed information of the patient is not being released, health officials said symptoms including a sore throat and cough were experienced after returning from a trip to Hungary.
Public Health Director Lou Kreidler said the victim and spouse flew into Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, then drove to Wichita Falls and the only contact with others was through the medical visit.
The spouse self-isolated from the victim and has shown no symptoms yet.
One Texoma resident said she is feeling overwhelmed but taking the necessary steps to stay safe.
Susan Phillips said both she and her husband have COPD, so staying clear of the coronavirus is of utmost priority to her and her family.
“He is in palliative care because his lungs are trashed already so any chance of him getting it is very high,” Phillips said.
Now that Kreidler has announced the first case, Phillips, who is overwhelmed by this news, said they will be even more cautious.
“Well we are trying to stay away from people in our isolation,” Phillips said.
County officials agree. They continue to stress the importance of taking all possible precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
“Practice social distancing, washing your hands often with soap and water or using hand sanitizer if water is not available,” Kreidler said.
Additionally, staying home if someone is sick or staying away from those who are.
Phillips also gives advice to residents who have been panic shopping.
“We don’t work together as a country, it will just be people killing people over toilet paper and stuff,” Phillips said.
Kreidler and Phillips agree residents should continue to do their part to prevent the spread of the virus.
Also, United Regional officials said in accordance with CDC guidelines, testing is currently limited to individuals who meet certain criteria and have a valid physician order for COVID-19 testing, so individuals should visit their primary care physicians to determine whether or not they should be tested and not go to the emergency room unless you are experiencing symptoms such as chest pain and shortness of breath.
Wichita County Judge Woody Gossom is expected to send out detailed plans for the county Thursday, but officials cannot stress enough the importance of social distancing, and proper hygiene now more than ever.
A health district helpline is also available to residents with questions, contact 940-761-7909.
In a special briefing Wednesday morning the Wichita County Health District announced that there was a case of COVID-19, coronavirus, in Wichita County.
According to a press release from The Health District, the patient is a 64-year-old Wichita County resident who traveled to Budapest and Hungary.
The patient flew into the DFW Airport and then drove to Wichita Falls. Upon return, the patient developed a cough and a sore throat. The patient was seen by a private physician and was tested by a private laboratory.
The patient is currently being cared for at home and their movement has been restricted to their care setting only.
Upon the patient’s return to Wichita Falls, public health guidelines were followed so that the patient and spouse were isolated at home other than the medical visit. They have not had been anywhere in Texoma or had any contact with individuals in the area.
The only other person the patient has had contact with the Spouse and the spouse self-isolated from the patient and is showing no symptoms associated with the virus. There are no other members in the household.
This patient has no connection to Sheppard Air Force Base.
The Health District setting up a phone bank at 11 a.m. to take questions on Covid-19. You can call 940-761-7909 with any questions or concerns.
If you are experiencing any symptoms please contact your doctor or the health department before going into the facility.
Stick with Texoma’s Homepage as this story develops.