We have lots of people asking a lot of questions about COVID testing, isolation, contacts, boosters and we wanted to post some information and resources for our patients.
Here is the King County spike in testing and hospital admissions – keep in mind total hospitalization is much higher because COVID patients need hospitalization much longer than average length of stay – particularly in ICU. One in 166 people in King County are testing positive daily.
King County rates of positive COVID tests and hospitalizations
If I have a positive home test do I need to get a clinic/drive through test?
– If you have symptoms you do not need to get a PCR test if your home test is positive.
– In most other situations it is ideal to get a PCR test as it is more sensitive than a home test. You should treat the positive home test as a positive until the PCR returns and isolate.
I’ve been vaccinated and have cold symptoms – should I test?
– Yes, this is a good use of a home test. Vaccinated/boostered individuals are often able to get/give COVID. While it dramatically decreases likelihood of severe infection and transmission, it does not completely prevent spread.
What’s the deal with duration of isolation?
– It is a moving target. Here are the most recent guidelines released this week. It shortens isolation for most people. If you are able to follow more conservative 10 days rather than 5 days please do so.
What do I do if I test positive?
– Follow the isolation protocols and for goodness sakes tell people who you may have exposed.
– If your test was in a lab you do not need to notify public health.
– If you had a home test you should use this link to report so that your contacts can be notified.
Do I need a booster?
Yes. These numbers compare unvaccinated with fully vaccinated, but those due for boosters are about midway between. That means a 35-64 year old who is due for booster is 10 times more likely to get hospitalized than a boosted 35-64 year old.
Unvaccinated 12-34 year-olds in Washington are:
Unvaccinated and under vaccinated 35-64 year-olds are:
Unvaccinated and under vaccinated 65+ year-olds are:
7 times more likely to get COVID-19 compared with fully vaccinated 65+ year-olds.
13 times more likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19 compared with fully vaccinated 65+ year- olds.
15 times more likely to die of COVID-19 compared with fully vaccinated 65+ year-olds.
Is it better to just get it now?
No. Many people get COVID multiple times – in fact the vaccine offers more protection than natural immunity. You also could have long haul symptoms and if you get another infection it could be more severe.
Stay safe, wear KN95s if you can (no fabric masks at this point), and keep that hand sanitizer at the ready. And we are here if you need us.