TULSA, Okla. (KFOR) – Health officials in Tulsa County say that a second person has tested presumptive positive for the coronavirus.
On Friday, officials with the Oklahoma State Department of Health held a news conference to announce that the state has its first confirmed coronavirus case.
Gov. Kevin Stitt said that a Tulsa County man in his 50s, who recently traveled to Italy, tested positive for the virus.
On Tuesday, officials with the Tulsa Health Department announced that another person has tested presumptive positive for COVID-19 in Tulsa County.
“With this new result, the total number of cases in Tulsa County is two; both travel-related with no known link to each other,” the department posted on Facebook.
Officials say the newest patient is a woman in her 20s who recently traveled to Italy.
Health experts say they are sending the result to the CDC for confirmation testing. At this point, local authorities are working to identify close contacts of the most recent case.
According to data from the Oklahoma State Department of Health, experts are awaiting test results for 11 people.
However, health experts say there is no reason to panic.
“Most of those infected to date have shown only mild symptoms,” said Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation President Stephen Prescott, M.D. “In many cases, it appears to be virtually indistinguishable from the seasonal flu.”
According to the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, the virus causes an upper respiratory infection, resulting in symptoms like a dry cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, and fever. Patients may also exhibit gastrointestinal distress or diarrhea.
“Unless they’re tested, some people will get infected and won’t even realize it,” Prescott said. “They’ll just come down with what seems like a mild case of the flu, recover, and go on with their lives.”
“It’s something very, very treatable. Most of them never even end up in the doctor’s office or in the hospital. They go home, they get rest, they get better,” Sen. James Lankford told KFOR.
State officials urge Oklahomans to stay away from ill patients and to frequently wash their hands. Also, avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
The virus is mainly spread from person-to-person, and symptoms usually appear two to 14 days after exposure. Officials stress that the most common symptoms are fever, cough, and shortness of breath.
If you do become sick, you are asked to stay away from others. If you have been in an area where the coronavirus is known to be spreading or been around a COVID-19 patient and develop symptoms, you are asked to call your doctor ahead of time and warn them that you might have been exposed to the virus. That way, experts say, they have the ability to take extra precautions to protect staff and other patients.