COVID-19 Q&A


SAN LUIS VALLEY - One new case for the SLV was reported since yesterday: from Alamosa County. The total number of cumulative cases is now 446. There are currently 43 known active cases. Forty-one total people have been hospitalized, and 393 have completed their isolation period. The total number of fatalities in individuals with COVID-19 is 10 for the region. Numbers are updated weekdays at slvemergency.org/slv-covid-19/

Frequently Asked Questions, continued:

Q. How accurate is Diagnostic Testing (PCR test)?

A. Testing seems to be most accurate during the first few days after symptoms appear. There is no perfect test for COVID-19. This type of test, combined with medical assessment of symptoms, is the best means we have right now for determining who has the illness. However, these tests have also produced false-negative results, which is one of the reasons it is important that those who have been advised to quarantine continue for the full 14 days, even if there is a negative test.

 

Q. Can I get an Antibody test?

A. Currently, antibody testing is only available when ordered by a medical provider. Expanded availability for consumers to get antibody testing without a referral will likely be coming later in July. Stay tuned for more information to come.

Q. My employer told me I need a negative COVID-19 test result to come back to work. How do I get one? 

A. A negative COVID-19 test is not recommended by Public Health for clearance to go back to work. On one hand, a person can test positive for several weeks despite being asymptomatic or properly recovered, and no longer contagious. On the other hand, according to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), “Negative results do not rule out the potential for infection and may offer a false sense of security.” More guidance for workplaces and employers can be found here: https://covid19.colorado.gov/guidance-resources.

Q. I’ve been told by Public Health to isolate, but I need a work excuse. How can I get one? A. Your Public Health office can provide a letter with isolation/quarantine recommendations that can be used for that purpose.

Q. I need a letter of clearance to go back to work, how do I get one? 

A. Public Health can provide a note saying you are no longer under quarantine or isolation, but cannot officially “clear” you of COVID-19 to return to work.

If you wish to pursue testing, there are several testing clinics scheduled for July around the Valley. You must call the day before to schedule an appointment:

  • Tuesday, July 14 from 9-11 at Guadalupe Health Center in Antonito. Call 719-587-2874 on July 13th starting at 8am to schedule an appointment.
  • Tuesday, July 21 from 8-11 at Mountain Valley School parking lot in Saguache, need to call 719-587-2901 on July 20th starting at 8 am

You may also contact your primary care provider or one of the numbers listed below to begin the screening process: 

For symptomatic individuals only, call:

  • Rio Grande Hospital 719-657-4990
  • SLVHealth Respiratory Clinic 719-589-2511 ext. 9 

For symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals who have had contact with a confirmed COVID-19 positive individual, call:

  • Valley-Wide Health Systems 719-589-3658 ext. 9 (M-F), 719-589-2562 (Sa/Su)

For general (non-medical) SLV COVID-19 related questions: [email protected], 719-480-8719 

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