OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – As families prepare for Memorial Day weekend, health officials say they have some good news regarding Oklahoma’s ongoing fight against the coronavirus.
On Monday morning, data from the Oklahoma State Department of Health shows that the state currently has 5,398 confirmed cases of COVID-19.
Officials say 64 percent of the new cases were in Texas County, where health officials are working to contain the spread of the virus.
So far, officials say 288 Oklahoma patients have died and 885 people have been hospitalized. Currently, 180 patients are hospitalized.
According to health department data, officials believe 4,008 Oklahomans have recovered from the virus. Although the CDC recommends patients be tested twice to determine if they have recovered, health department officials say they are preserving tests for patients who are sick.
Instead, the Oklahoma State Department of Health identifies a person as recovered if they are currently not hospitalized or deceased and it has been 14 days since the onset of their symptoms or since they were diagnosed.
State officials urge Oklahomans to stay away from ill patients and to frequently wash their hands. Also, avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
At this point, Americans are urged to practice ‘social distancing’ by staying in their homes as much as possible and not going out into a crowd.
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.
The novel coronavirus was first detected in China late last year and has since spread to locations across the globe, including the United States.
While the full extent of COVID-19 is not known yet, reported illnesses have ranged from extremely mild to severe, some resulting in death. Officials say that 80 to 85 percent of cases of COVID-19 have been mild, similar to a cold or the flu.
Older people and those with underlying health conditions like heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes are at a greater risk for a serious case.