Dr. Pedati.

The Iowa Department of Public Health says two Iowans who returned recently from China are undergoing testing for the coronavirus.

Department Medical Director, Caitlin Pedati spokes online today and says the two are under voluntary home confinement while testing is done. “These individuals are isolated with Public Health Supervision and this testing is being done by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We anticipate the results will likely come back to us in several days,” Pedati says. She says they won’t release any more information on the identity of the two.

“We always balance patient privacy and security with sharing information that is important to protecting the public’s health. We do that thoughtfully and in accordance with state and federal laws,” according to Pedati. “So, in this circumstance, we’re not going to be providing any additional information about the patients or their location to the public.”

Doctor Pedati says there is no confirmation that the two actually have the coronavirus until the results come back.
“There’s no recommended action that the general public needs to take at this time. Now, if that were to change, we would certainly adjust accordingly,” she says.

Pedati says we are still in the flu season and everyone should continue to take precautions to avoid any kind of virus. “We want Iowans to remember those good respiratory etiquette habits of covering your cough, washing your hands and truly staying home from work or school when you are ill — which we know is hard to do,” Pedati says.

She says there is one group of people who should pay particular attention to their health. “We also want to reiterate that anybody who has traveled to China in the past 14 days and become sick with fever or breathing problems, should reach out to their health care provider and call ahead to let them know they are coming,” According to Pedati. “And we’d like health care providers to be on the lookout for people with these symptoms who have traveled to China within the last 14 days.”

Thousands of people have been infected in China and nearly 500 have died.