(Dover, Ohio) – Tuscarawas County Health Commissioner, Katie Seward, is releasing the following letter to the community this morning, announcing she has tested positive for COVID-19 via PCR testing.
Tuscarawas County Community,
I was notified on Tuesday evening that I have tested positive for COVID-19. My symptoms started on Sunday, November 16th, and I had remained home from work on Monday, November 17th, due to those symptoms. Also on Monday, the Health Department identified that I had brief contact with a colleague last week who subsequently tested positive for COVID-19. Out of an abundance of caution, I was tested via drive-up testing at the Tuscarawas County Health Department on Monday afternoon.
Since that time, I have been isolating at home and managing symptoms which include sore throat, chills, fatigue, runny nose, cough, earaches, and very sore teeth! I have yet to develop a fever.
Since the beginning of COVID-19, I have taken every public health precaution advised to avoid infection. However, knowing that I am one of many persons who have an underlying health condition that weakens my immune system, I was aware of the likelihood that the virus would at some point find me.
As mentioned, time and time again, the measures Public Health Officials are asking everyone to take are not perfect. It is like Swiss cheese. Each measure has holes, but when we layer the pieces, we close as many holes as we can, but not all of them. That is why it is so important to do everything we can to work together to slow this spread, until we have a better prevention method.
We know the virus is spreading aggressively in Tuscarawas County. It is finding its way into our homes, our workplaces, and our healthcare systems. So now, more than ever, I ask each of you to do what you can to help us slow this spread by staying home when sick, limiting contacts and gatherings of persons from outside your home, washing your hands frequently, and wearing a mask when in public.
I am working with the local health departments to identify and quarantine any close contacts, and I will remain in isolation throughout the appropriate period. I will continue to be as engaged in the response as my health allows during this time. However, I have a wonderful team who will continue to work diligently on the response.
I look forward to making a full recovery and returning to work, once permitted, where I can continue to fight the battle against this virus for our community.