Background and Transmission
Background information as of March 2, 2020
The NH Department of Health and Human Services has confirmed the first person in our region, from Grafton County, tested positive for the Novel Coronavirus, now known as COVID-19.
Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health (D-HH) leadership has established assessment and planning/operational groups to actively address this issue and our High Threat Infection (HTI) team has implemented its response plans.
Consistent with federal and state laws governing patient confidentiality, we will not provide any information on the patient other than to say that the patient is an employee of Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center (DHMC) in Lebanon. The patient is currently isolated at home to limit ongoing transmission and is being monitored by the state for any worsening of symptoms. Risk to patients coming into the medical center remains low at this time.
We are working with the state, and have a clear plan on the travel pattern of this patient and to follow up with any others with whom the patient may have had contact since exposure. This remains a very fluid situation, and more information will be provided as it becomes available.
We know that people in our region are concerned about COVID-19 virus (caused by the Novel Coronavirus 2019-nCoV). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (NH DHHS) are closely monitoring this outbreak of respiratory illness.
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 (caused by the Novel Coronavirus 2019-nCoV) is the virus identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China, which is spreading worldwide.
At this time, it is unclear how easily or sustainably this virus is spreading between people. The latest situation summary updates are available on the CDC's web page Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
How is it transmitted?
Current understanding about the transmission, severity of illness, and other features of the virus is based on continued investigation by the CDC. The virus is mainly thought to spread from person-to-person.
What are the symptoms?
CDC believes that symptoms of COVID-19 may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 after exposure. Symptoms can include:
- Shortness of breath
- CDC situation summary and information you should know
- Dartmouth-Hitchcock COVID-19 media alert March 2, 2020
- Surgeon general: Stop buying masks March 1, 2020 The Hill
- How Does the Coronavirus Compare With the Flu February 29, 2020 The New York Times
- Ten pressing questions about coronavirus, answered by experts February 28, 2020 The Boston Globe
- Information about COVID-19