HOUSTON - Two additional presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 have been identified in Fort Bend County residents. The City of Houston Laboratory ran the tests and specimens will be sent to the CDC laboratory for confirmation.
The two cases are:
- A woman in her 60s, with a history of international travel. Her symptoms have resolved and she is in mandatory quarantine at home.
- A woman in her 60s, with a history of international travel. She is experiencing mild symptoms and in self-quarantine at home.
These individuals are part of the same group of travelers to Egypt associated with the recent cases in Harris County and City of Houston.
These presumptive cases are actionable and we are treating them as a positive. Fort Bend County Health & Human Services will expand the epidemiological investigation and will continue to lead the effort to quickly identify close contacts with these individuals. Close contacts may include family members, co-workers, emergency responders, and other contacts.
People who recently returned to the United States from a COVID-19 outbreak area need to monitor fever, cough, and difficulty breathing for at least 14 days after return. Seek medical care right away if symptoms develop. Before, visiting their healthcare provider or hospital, symptomatic people with a travel history to a COVID-19 outbreak area must call ahead and tell the healthcare professional about their recent travel and symptoms.
If a person has not been around anyone with COVID-19 or has not visited an ongoing COVID-19 outbreak area, they are not at risk.
Dr. Minter, Director of Fort Bend County Health & Human Services and Local Health Authority said, “we know the COVID-19 situation is evolving quickly and is concerning to our residents. We strongly encourage the community to heed travel alerts issued by the CDC and the State Department and to practice excellent personal hygiene habits. Remember that all of these cases are all travel-related and there is no evidence of community spread at this time.”
The first presumptive case was reported in Fort Bend County on Wednesday.
On Thursday, Harris County confirmed the first two cases of COVID-19. The tests were verified by the CDC. The patients are a man and a woman from the unincorporated area of northwest Harris County.
Later on Thursday night, two additional presumptive cases were reported — one man in Harris County and one man in the City of Houston.
Privacy protection laws only permit the release of limited patient information, and the health department is unable to release any additional patient information.
While COVID-19 is a new respiratory virus, daily precautions recommended to prevent respiratory illnesses are the same:
• Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use hand sanitizer when you can't wash your hands.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
• Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue and throw the tissue away. If you don’t have a tissue, use the elbow of your sleeve. Don’t use your hands to cover coughs and sneezes.
• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
• Stay home when you are sick and keep children home when they are sick.
• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
• Get a flu shot. (Although the flu shot does not protect against COVID-19, it is flu season.)
The health department says people who recently returned to the United States from a COVID-19 outbreak area need to monitor for fever, cough and difficulty breathing for at least 14 days and seek medical care right away if they develop symptoms. Before going to a doctor’s office or emergency room, symptomatic people with a travel history to a COVID-19 outbreak area must call ahead to tell the healthcare professionals about their recent travel and symptoms.
Human coronaviruses most commonly spread from an infected person to others through:
• Respiratory droplets released into the air by coughing and sneezing.
• Close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands.
• Touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes before washing your hands.
Houston residents can visit HoustonEmergency.org for updated information about local risk, routine protective actions, frequently asked questions, communication resources, rumor control, emergency preparedness tips and more.