A patient at UConn Health has tested positive for coronavirus, according to the hospital.
The man from Hartford is in his 50s and was identified as a possible case when he arrived at the hospital, a UConn Health spokesperson said.
The man was discharged with instructions for him and his family to quarantine.
"This patient ended up going home after one night in the hospital and is doing very well," hospital officials said on Sunday.
While inside the hospital, officials said the patient was treated as if he was positive for coronavirus. After he left the hospital, the test came back positive and he was educated on how to self-quarantine effectively.
"I'd like to emphasize, I'd like to reassure everybody that we are completely set up with negative pressure rooms, all of the protocols, all of the education, all of the guidance in a cutting edge university to make sure that any patients that we have with COVID-19, including this patient, are treated well and are treated safely to protect our UConn Health family, but also the community at large," said CEO of UConn Health and CEO of UConn John Dempsey Hospital Dr. Andy Agwunobi.
Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin said they are trying to identify contacts that the man may have had with the community.
"There is no known contact that this particular patient had to which this infection can be traced. So what that probably means is that it's a case of community spread. In other words, there are others in the community that have it, it was transmitted to this individual and there are cases that are unidentified," Bronin added.
Bronin reiterated that it's likely that the man isn't the only one in the community with coronavirus. He believes there are others who probably have it, but haven't been tested yet.
"I want to emphasize that the news here is not that there is a Hartford resident who has the coronavirus. The news is that there is a Hartford resident who has tested positive for the coronavirus," Bronin said.
"I make that distinction because in all probability, there are many, many more residents of Hartford and every other community in Connecticut who have the coronavirus, who simply haven't been tested," he added.
On Sunday, Director of Hartford Health Dept. Liany Arroyo said the patient at UConn Health will likely count as a new case, which would bring the number of patients with coronavirus in Connecticut to 21.
New statewide numbers are expected to be released on Sunday.
"We expect a significant spike in cases over the next three days to couple of weeks and one of the reasons is that outpatient testing is going to become much more available in the next few days," Dr. Agwunobi said.
"In the coming weeks and months, the City of Hartford will probably see hundreds, if not thousands, of cases of coronavirus. The State of Connecticut will probably see thousands, if not tens of thousands," Bronin added.
The key symptoms of the coronavirus, according to the CDC are:
- Shortness of breath
Symptoms can appear in infected persons two to 14 days after exposure.
Coronavirus Prevention Steps
Steps for prevention from the CDC include:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others
- You could spread COVID-19 to others even if you do not feel sick.
- Everyone should wear a cloth face cover when they have to go out in public, such as to the grocery store
- Coverings should not be placed on children under 2, anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
- The face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected
- Do NOT use a facemask meant for a health care worker
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
Steps to Self-Monitor for Coronavirus
Steps to self-monitor from the CDC include:
- Take your temperature with a thermometer two times a day and monitor for fever. Also watch for cough or trouble breathing.
- Do not take public transportation, taxis, or ride-shares during the time you are practicing social distancing.
- Avoid crowded places (such as shopping centers and movie theaters) and limit your activities in public.
- Keep your distance from others (about 6 feet or 2 meters).
If you do get sick with a fever, cough or have trouble breathing, call ahead before you go to a doctor’s office or emergency room and communicate with your doctor about your recent travel.
- If you develop symptoms, stay home and avoid contact with others. Do not go to work or school for this 14-day period. Discuss your work situation with your employer before returning to work.
The CDC has a special website set up with details about the coronavirus, including how it spreads and treatment.
Anyone with questions relating to coronavirus can call 2-1-1 or text "CTCOVID" to 898211. The 2-1-1 hotline is available 24 hours a day.
You can also visit the state's coronavirus information website here. Residents are encouraged to check the website for answers to questions before calling the hotline.