|Florida Department of Health - www.floridahealth.gov|
Enhanced Surveillance and Preparedness for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
The Florida Department of Health (Department) would like to update health care providers and laboratories on the detection and reporting of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The outbreak has now spread from where it originated in China with sustained community transmission in many countries, causing an outbreak of respiratory illness. The Department is collaborating with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to conduct surveillance for persons who may have been exposed to or infected with COVID-19 while traveling to impacted countries or who have had contact with a case to arrange for confirmatory testing.
As of March 9, 2020, 15 cases of COVID-19 have been identified in Florida including one non-resident and two deaths. In addition, five Floridians with COVID-19 were repatriated from China and isolated by the federal government. Most have a history of travel including to Italy, Egypt and the Dominican Republic. Multiple cases without known travel have also been identified in Florida. As a result of the increasing response needs to COVID-19, Dr. Scott Rivkees, State Surgeon General, declared a public health emergency on March 1, 2020.
Additionally, as of March 9, 2020, 472 COVID-19 infections have been confirmed in the United States (U.S.) including in persons repatriated to the U.S. with exposures in Wuhan City or on the Diamond Princess Cruise Ship. Limited person-to-person transmission has been detected in the U.S. Since the outbreak began in December 2019, over 109,000 confirmed cases have been reported worldwide. Most cases (81,000) have been detected in China. However, the outbreak is spreading quickly across the globe and has been detected in 104 countries or territories. Please continue to monitor the CDC website for updates: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
All health care providers should be prepared to identify, collect specimens, and care for patients under investigation for COVID-19. Health care providers should immediately notify infection control personnel at their health care facility if they identify a person meeting the PUI for COVID-19 criteria below.
Specimen Collection for a PUI for COVID-19 for Testing at Bureau of Public Health Laboratories.
For initial diagnostic testing for COVID-19, CDC recommends collecting and testing upper respiratory (nasopharyngeal AND oropharyngeal swabs), and lower respiratory (sputum, if possible) for those patients with productive coughs. Induction of sputum is not recommended. Specimens should be collected as soon as possible once a PUI is identified, regardless of the time of symptom onset. Please consult your county health department for instructions on shipping to the Bureau of Public Health Laboratories.
Specimen Collection for a PUI for COVID-19 for Testing at Commercial Laboratories.
Health Care Infection Prevention and Control Recommendations
Hospital and Health Care Professional Preparedness
Please click here for the Clinician Screening Tool for Identifying Persons Under Investigation for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
1For healthcare personnel, testing may be considered if there has been exposure to a person with suspected COVID-19 without laboratory confirmation.
a) being within approximately 6 feet (2 meters), or within the room or care area, of a COVID-19 case for a prolonged period of time while not wearing recommended personal protective equipment or PPE (e.g., gowns, gloves, NIOSH-certified disposable N95 respirator, eye protection); close contact can include caring for, living with, visiting, or sharing a health care waiting area or room with a COVID-19 case – or –
4Fever may be subjective or confirmed.
5Affected areas are defined as geographic regions where sustained community transmission has been identified. Countries with CDC Level 2 or 3 Travel Health Notices include: China, South Korea, Iran, Italy, and Japan (as of February 28,2020). A current list of affected areas can be found at: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/