COVID-19 Information & FAQs
Reported illnesses range from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed COVID-19 cases. Symptoms of COVID-19 may include any of the following: fever (>100.4), dry cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, chills, decreased appetite, diminished sense of taste or smell, diarrhea, fatigue, headache, muscle/joint aches, nausea, rash, rigors, runny nose, sore throat, or sputum production. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure.
FEVER > 100.4
SHORTNESS OF BREATH
If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19 get medical attention immediately. Emergency warning signs include, but are not limited to, trouble breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion or inability to arouse, and bluish lips or face.
Please consult your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning. Call your doctor if you develop symptoms and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19, or have recently traveled from an area with widespread/ongoing community spread of COVID-19.
Flatten the Curve
“Flatten the curve” means to avoid a huge spike of infections in a short period of time and instead, stretch – or flatten – the number of infections over a longer time period. By slowing the transmission we can have fewer people ill at the same time and avoid overwhelming Juneau’s healthcare system.
What You Can Do to Prevent Illness
There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person:
- Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
- Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
Take Steps to Protect Yourself and Others
Clean Hands Often
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
Avoid Close Contact
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Put distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
Stay Home if Sick
- Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care.
- Stay in touch with your doctor. Call before you get medical care. Be sure to get care if you feel worse or you think it is an emergency.
- Avoid public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis.
Cover Coughs & Sneezes
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
- Throw used tissues in the trash.
- Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
Avoid Touching Face
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
- If surfaces are dirty, clean them: Use detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection. Complete disinfection guidance can be found here
Frequently Asked Questions
A novel coronavirus is a new coronavirus that has not been previously identified. The virus causing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), is not the same as the coronaviruses that commonly circulate among humans and cause mild illness, like the common cold. A diagnosis with coronavirus 229E, NL63, OC43, or HKU1 is not the same as a COVID-19 diagnosis. Patients with COVID-19 will be evaluated and cared for differently than patients with common coronavirus diagnosis.
If you think you might have COVID-19, stay home except to get medical care. If you have even mild symptoms of COVID-19, call your primary healthcare provider or the COVID-19 Screening Hotline at 586-6000. The hotline is available daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. If you call the hotline, testing will be arranged if appropriate at the Drive-Thru Testing Site.
Symptoms of COVID-19 include any of the following: fever (>100.4), dry cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, chills, decreased appetite, diminished sense of taste or smell, diarrhea, fatigue, headache, muscle/joint aches, nausea, rash, rigors, runny nose, sore throat, or phlegm production.
Please also refer to CDC recommendations: What to do if you are sick
They are both terms we’re hearing a lot about as COVID-19 spreads, and they mean very different things. Isolation and quarantine are methods used to protect the public by preventing exposure to infected persons or to persons who may be infected.
- Isolation – separates sick people from people who are not sick.
- Quarantine –separates and restricts movements of people who may have been exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick.
If you are sick, you will be asked to self-isolate, most likely at your home if you are not seriously ill and can separate yourself from other family members. If you have had contact with known case or have traveled to an area where there is COVID-19 spread but are not yet showing symptoms, you may be asked to quarantine at home for a period of time to determine if you will become ill.
Please refer to the State of Alaska’s COVID-19 Traveler Information webpage for the latest Information, health mandates, and advisories for anyone traveling to Alaska from the lower 48 and international destinations. There you’ll find information on the Travel Portal, the revised Health Mandate 10, and Frequently Asked Questions (scroll down to the questions on “Critical Infrastructure Travel,” “For Alaskans,” “Interstate travel & Testing,” “Quarantine and Minimizing Interactions,” and “Test Voucher & Standing Order”).
In-state travel in Alaska is allowed for all purposes, however local communities may enact their own requirements and rules for travelers. Always check borough and city orders before departing on travel.
Juneau Police Department and Capital City Fire/Rescue are still responding to emergencies and have been trained in taking proper precautions to protect themselves. In addition, both have implemented the following changes in order to limit staff exposure:
- Calls for JPD services that do not require a police officer to physically respond will be handled online or over the phone. Non-emergency reporting can be done by calling (907) 586-0600 or by visiting Juneaupolice.com.
- CCFR has initiated a temporary “quarantine at home” protocol for certain 911 transports. If the call is related to COVID-19 symptoms, the medical provider that arrives will determine if transport to Bartlett Regional Hospital is needed, or if criteria for quarantining at home is met.
For more helpful information about COVID-19, please refer to CDC’s Frequently Asked Questions, the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) website, and Bartlett Regional Hospital’s COVID-19 page..