If I have COVID-19 symptoms (fever, fatigue, cough, sneezing, aches, pains, chills/shakes, body aches, headache, runny/stuffy nose, sore throat, diarrhea, shortness of breath, loss of smell or taste), what should I do?

First, self-isolate and contact a health care provider for further instruction. They will help you determine next steps and refer you to a testing center. Drive-thru testing is offered by HCC of Rural Missouri and its Live Well Community Health Centers every Wednesday, from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Lexington 4-Life Center (while testing supplies last). However, the first thing to do if you think you may have contracted the virus is to call a health care provider for an assessment. If you are instructed to get tested, you must quarantine while you await results.

If you have these emergency warning signs for COVID-19, get medical attention immediately:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Persistent chest pain
  • New confusion or inability to arouse
  • Blush lips or face

These warning signs are not conclusive. The CDC recommends that you call a health care provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning.

Additionally, the CDC recommends calling 911 if you have a medical emergency. Let the operator know that you have, or think you might have, COVID-19. If possible, put on a cloth face covering before medical help arrives.

What happens if I test positive?

Patients who are positive will be treated based on CDC/FDA recommendations. Also, be sure to do the following:

Stay home. Do not leave your home, except to get medical care. Do not visit public areas.

Take care of yourself. Get rest and stay hydrated. Take over-the-counter medicines, such as acetaminophen, to help you feel better.

Stay in touch with your doctor. Call before you get medical care. Be sure to get care if you have trouble breathing, or have any other emergency warning signs, or if you think it is an emergency.

Avoid public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis.

As much as possible, stay in a specific room and away from other people and pets in your home. If possible, you should use a separate bathroom. If you need to be around other people or animals in or outside of the home, wear a cloth face covering.

Additional guidance is available for those living in close quarters and shared housing.

See COVID-19 and Animals if you have questions about pets.

Monitor your symptoms, which include fever, cough, and shortness of breath but other symptoms may be present as well. Trouble breathing is a more serious symptom that means you should get medical attention.

Follow care instructions from your health care provider and local health department. Your local health authorities may give instructions on checking your symptoms and reporting information.

If I have tested positive or was considered presumptive positive for COVID-19, when can I discontinue isolation? 

Symptom-Based Strategy

Persons who have tested positive for COVID-19 – with symptoms – and were directed to care for themselves at home may discontinue isolation once the following conditions are met:

  • At least 3 days (72 hours) have passed since recovery.  Recovery is defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications.
  • Improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath).
  • At least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.

Test-Based Strategy 

Persons who tested positive for COVID-19, exhibited symptoms and were directed to care for themselves at home may discontinue isolation once the following conditions are met:

  • Resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications
  • Improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath) 
  • Negative results of an FDA Emergency Use Authorized molecular assay for COVID-19 from at least two consecutive nasopharyngeal swab specimens collected less than 24 hours apart (total of two negative specimens).

Persons with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 who have not had any symptoms may discontinue isolation when at least 7 to 10 days have passed since the date of the first positive COVID-19 diagnostic test – and have had no subsequent illness provided they remain asymptomatic. For three days following discontinuation of isolation, these persons should continue to limit contact (stay six feet away from others) and limit potential of dispersal of respiratory secretions by wearing a covering for their nose and mouth when in settings where other persons are present. In community settings, this covering may be a barrier mask, such as a bandana, scarf, or cloth mask. The covering does not refer to a medical mask or respirator.

The Lafayette County Health Department may provide formal, legal quarantine releases upon request. Persons under investigation, due to a positive COVID-19 test, must be released by the county Health Department. 

Call: To contact the Lafayette County Health Department, call 660.259.4371.

Text, Click or Call: To find out about testing, text LiveWell to 72727, or visit LiveWellCenters.org. You may also call 660.243.4005 between 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., or 660.259.2440 after 5 p.m.

If you are experiencing an emergency medical situation, call 911.

Visit https://cdc.gov/coronavirus for coronavirus information and resources