Local Health Specialists Watching For Coronavirus
OKLAHOMA CITY - The state health department said two Oklahomans are being tested for the Coronavirus. The pair apparently showed symptoms after a recent trip to China.
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The Oklahoma State Department of Health said the test results won't be back for a few days and staff couldn't provide information on the two people other than they met the criteria.
"This can be a serious condition where people can get really sick," said Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Vijay Kolli. "There are a lot of deaths reported in China."
Dr. Kolli works at Norman Regional Health Systems and said the symptoms are very similar to the flu.
The specialist said staff are putting up signs in the ER and doctors offices warning about the virus, but really their focus is people that have traveled to or come in contact with someone that has been to China.
There's no vaccine for the virus, but Dr. Kolli said one thing that makes this virus tricky is that people can spread it before they even show symptoms.
"An incubation of around 12 to 14 days, the first few days you will not even have any symptoms you are shedding it and spreading it to people too," said Dr. Kolli.
The specialist said to test someone for the virus, a swab has to be taken and sent to the CDC.
"That's the only way right now, there are no commercially available tests at this time," said Dr. Kolli.
The specialist said he thinks it could be weeks until any type of commercial test would be available.
The OSDH said even if an Oklahoman was infected "the risk to the general public is low."