OAKLAND — A third case of COVID-19 has been confirmed in Garrett County, health officials said Monday.
The patient is a man in his 60s from Garrett County who traveled within the United States with two women who also tested positive for the virus.
Those women, both in their 60s, were confirmed Sunday as the county's first cases. They continue to self-isolate at home and have not needed hospitalization.
The latest case, however, was admitted to the hospital.
“This patient was admitted to GRMC, and given his symptoms, as well as his health and travel history, we identified him as a potential case upon admission,” said Mark Boucot, the hospital’s president and CEO. “Our staff treated him using precautions and approaches outlined by the CDC as we awaited test results. He was then transferred to WVU Medicine where his treatment is continuing.”
None of the three cases had traveled internationally or had known contact with a COVID-19 case.
The Board of County Commissioners declared a state of emergency that took effect at 5 p.m. Sunday, saying a "public health catastrophe has occurred or a threat thereof is imminent." The order allows first responders to prepare, said Commissioners Chairman Paul Edwards.
“The health department is coordinating our response efforts and will continue to work to reduce the spread of infection and protect the health of all people in Garrett County,” said Garrett County Health Officer Bob Stephens.
“In response to the positive test outcomes, the Garrett County Health Department is following protocol and gathering information from the tested individuals,” Stephens said.
Because of privacy laws, no additional information about the positive cases will be released, officials said.
Stephens said health department staff is contacting people who had contact to those who have tested positive.
"If you do not receive a phone call from the health department you should not be concerned that you have been exposed to these individuals,” he said.