We Need Your Help Preventing COVID-19 Spread

With an increase in outbreaks locally and in surrounding communities, the Malheur County Health Department needs help to stop the spread to prevent more people from getting sick, prevent larger outbreaks, and prevent the need for further restrictions on schools and businesses.

Community Spread Through Outbreaks:

  • Malheur County still has a very high sporadic rate of cases, meaning we don’t know where the positive case was infected. This could mean that there are more cases in the community who don’t know they are sick and are passing along the virus.
  • Several schools and businesses are reporting numbers of cases associated with their buildings. There have also been events where cases are known to have spread to Malheur County residents. If you have been at one of the following, please monitor for symptoms and follow all precautions.
    • October 2, 2020 funeral at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Owyhee Ward in Nyssa
    • Nyssa School District or Four Rivers Community School
    • Fruitland or Parma youth activities
    • Social gatherings of more than 10 people indoors or 25 outdoors
    • Faith-based gatherings of more than 50 people
  • If you have been at a high-risk event or in a setting with reported cases in the last 14 days, the health department recommends you access testing. If you have symptoms, you should isolate immediately and be tested. If you had close contact with a case, you should quarantine and be tested.
  • There are several ways to be tested.
    • Call your health care provider.
    • Visit the Valley Family Health Care Mobile Access Clinic.
    • Call a walk in clinic or make an appointment online for drive through testing Rite Aid.
    • Uninsured or first responder? Rapid tests are available Monday through Thursday by appointment for people without insurance and first responders at the Malheur County Health Department.
    • Go to the Drive-Thru Testing Event October 14th at the Fairgrounds in Ontario:
      • Wednesday, October 14th COVID-19 Testing Event in Ontario
        • When: 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
        • Where: Malheur County Fairgrounds (795 NW 9th St, Ontario)
        • Who: Anyone over age seven. No symptoms or exposure required.

What To Do If You Test Positive For COVID-19:

  • Stay Home! We’ll assume you have an infection now and are contagious to other people. Whether or not you have symptoms, stay home and separate from others.
  • If you have symptoms, you can be around others after:
    • You have no fever for 24 hours without the use of medicine, AND
    • Your symptoms improve, AND
    • At least 10 days have passed since your first symptoms
    • Members of your household should stay home for 14 days, longer if you are unable to isolate from them at home.
  • If you don’t have symptoms, you can be around others after:
    • 10 days have passed since your test
    • Members of your household should stay home for 14 days, longer if you are unable to isolate from them at home.
  • A Public Health Case Investigator will call you to explain your test results and give you information on how to protect yourself, family, friends and co-workers until you are not contagious anymore.
  • Tell your close contacts. It might take a couple of days before a health worker calls you, so you should tell close contacts yourself as soon as possible.
  • Resources for staying home: The Case Investigator can also help you figure out what kind of support you need to isolate yourself, and can connect you to organizations that can help with resources you may need (groceries, financial support, help with rent, other essentials).
  • Take care of yourself. It is important to take care of yourself and prevent spreading the virus to others. Learn more from the CDC here.
  • If you work, do not go to work. If you test positive for COVID-19, stay home, even if you don’t have symptoms. Call in sick. Take sick leave if you have it. Isolate yourself. If your employer requires a doctor’s note to stay home, you can contact the Malheur County Health Department or the place where you were tested.

If You Have Been Around Someone With COVID-19:

  • If you have been around someone who has COVID-19, you may need to figure out if you have been in close contact with them.
    • Close contact means spending at least 15 minutes or more at during the course of a day within 6 feet of someone (family, friend, co-worker, acquaintance or someone you don’t know) with or without a face covering. The 15 minutes of contact can be cumulative, not in one single block of time.
    • If you have been in close contact with someone who has symptoms or tested positive for COVID-19, you are at a higher risk of getting sick and spreading the disease to others.
  • How will you know if you have been in close contact?
    • A call from a public health worker.
      • You may get a call from a public health worker to let you know you’ve been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19. If you get a call, follow their instructions.
    • Family, friends or someone else
      • You may hear from a friend, family or your workplace that someone you know has COVID-19. Or you may find out that you visited a business where someone tested positive.
  • To figure out if you had close contact, recall your activities and the precautions you took. Think about:
    • Who you were around and for how long
    • What activities you engaged in
    • What preventive measures you practiced when you were in the building
    • If you’re not sure or have questions, call your healthcare provider or the Malheur County Health Department. If you don’t have a doctor call 211.
  • What should you do?
    • If you were around someone long enough to be considered a close contact, you should quarantine at home for 14 days. Call the Malheur County Health Department to talk to a Case Investigator and tell them you are potentially connected to a case.
    • If you didn’t have close contact, but were around someone with COVID-19, monitor yourself for symptoms for 14 days starting from the last time you were around them. Get ready to isolate yourself from others if you start to feel sick.
    • If you did have close contact with someone who has COVID-19, you should quarantine to prevent spreading the virus to others. Get tested, even if you don’t have symptoms. It’s best if you wait 3-4 days after you were exposed before taking a test. The test may not work if you get tested too soon. You should stay home and away from others while you wait.

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