9 New COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Developments

Monday, March 16th 2020, 5:50 am
By: Ashley Holden

Here are nine new COVID-19, coronavirus developments: 
  1. STATES OF EMERGENCY - Oklahoma City, Tulsa and some other surrounding cities are under a state of emergency. Governor Kevin Stitt also declared a state of emergency for the state on Sunday, March 15.
  2. GATHERINGS OF 50 OR MORE BANNED IN OKC - This mandate is a part of the state of emergency, but currently only includes city-operated facilities.  
  3. DOCTORS CAN ORDER COVID-19 TESTS - Before local physicians would have to go through the Oklahoma State Department of Health's state epidemiologist. Now, doctors can make that decision on their own. News 9 was told the test is a nasal swab similar to a flu test.
  4. PRESUMPTIVE POSITIVE NOW MEANS POSITIVE - Up until March 15, tests being run by the OSDH were being confirmed by the CDC. This was because Oklahoma's lab and testing process was new. Now, they are able to announce positive results without this double check system.
  5. PRIVATE LABS ARE UP AND RUNNING - In addition to the OSDH's public health lab, there are two private labs processing COVID-19 tests. One has already had a positive result. The OSDH said they are working on ironing out communication with these private labs.
  6. TESTING IS DONE AT A DOCTORS OFFICE - The COVID-19 test is given at a local physicians office. The department said if a person thinks they've been exposed to the virus and are experiencing symptoms, call their doctor and warn them before showing up.
  7. SELF QUARANTINE - According to the OSDH if someone thinks they've been exposed to the virus they should self quarantine. If they start experiencing symptoms, the OSDH urges people to call their doctor. People should not immediately head to an ER as their first step.
  8. 8 CONFIRMED CASES IN OKLAHOMA - There are eight confirmed cases in Oklahoma but according to the OSDH they've run over 100 tests. For updates on results, head to OSDH's specific page for testing numbers
  9. OSDH UPDATES EACH DAY AT 11 A.M. - A spokesperson with the OSDH said she will be passing along updates each day around 11:00 a.m. Tune in each day to News 9 at Noon for the latest information.