OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – As leaders across the country work on a plan to reopen the country, health experts say the number of coronavirus cases grew to more than 2,400.
On Friday morning, data from the Oklahoma State Department of Health shows that the state currently has 2,465 confirmed cases of COVID-19.
Officials also announced five additional deaths from the virus:
- Two women in the 65 and older age group in Delaware County
- A man in the 65 and older age group in Tulsa County
- A woman in the 65 and older age group in Creek County
- A woman in the 65 and older age group in Greer County.
Two of those occurred in the past 24 hours.
Following a change to the health department’s website, a county-by-county breakdown of case numbers could not be found.
So far, officials say 136 Oklahoma patients have died and 541 people have been hospitalized. Currently, 325 patients are hospitalized.
According to health department data, officials believe 1,441 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.