January 10, 2022) – As the highly contagious omicron variant of COVID-19 continues to spread across the country, it’s important to understand what to do next if you think you have COVID-19 or are tested positive for the virus.
If you have been exposed to COVID-19 or think you may have contracted the virus, you can find a community testing site near you by visiting BrowardHealth.org/COVIDTesting. Broward Health emergency departments are not COVID-19 testing sites.
Although omicron is more contagious, the good news is that it appears to have milder symptoms compared to previous variants. If you test positive for COVID-19 and have mild symptoms, it’s best to stay home to recover instead of going to the emergency room.
“There is no need to seek emergency treatment if you have mild symptoms,” said Joshua Lenchus, DO, acting chief medical officer at Broward Health. “Stay home, sleep, stay hydrated and take traditional over-the-counter medications to treat your symptoms.”
Please seek emergency medical attention if you or your loved one has more severe symptoms of COVID-19, such as:
- Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath.
- Persistent pain or pressure in the chest.
- New confusion.
- Inability to wake or stay awake.
As we continue to battle new variants of COVID-19, there are effective ways to protect you and your loved ones from serious illness and hospitalization, Dr. Lenchus said.
“The most powerful tool to fight this virus is for everyone to get vaccinated and get the recommended booster,” he said. “Wear your mask indoors, wash your hands and practice physical distancing if necessary to help prevent the spread of this disease.”
For more information on how to treat COVID-19, talk to your doctor or call our free Nurse Connect 24/7 line at 954-320-5730.
For more information, visit BrowardHealth.org/COVIDTesting.