Kitsap Public Health District: Not enough tests available to test those with COVID-19 symptoms in Kitsap County

Kitsap Public Health District: Not enough tests available to test those with COVID-19 symptoms in Kitsap County

Kitsap County does not have enough tests available to find out if Kitsap residents who are showing symptoms of 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) actually have the virus, the board of the Kitsap Public Health District was told at a special meeting Tuesday.

“No matter what the publicity says … there are only limited testing capabilities at the state level and at private labs. There is not the ability to test everyone,” said Dr. Susan Turner, health officer for the Kitsap Public Health District.

Testing is being limited, mostly to the population most vulnerable to contracting coronavirus, health care providers, and first responders and others.

“We know people are frustrated,” Turner said.

Even people who have symptoms are not being tested, she said.

“Testing is very limited still,” Turner said.

There is an ongoing shortage of personal protection supplies, as well — but no outside funding to help with the health district’s ongoing spread to COVID-19 in Kitsap County.

“There is no funding for our response effort as of yet,” Turner said.

The health district is facing staff illnesses, and programs other than the agency’s COVID-19 response are being impacted.

“We are not able to keep up wth the community side of things,” Turner said.

The health district announced another two cases in Kitsap County in an update Monday afternoon.

The confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Kitsap County are:

March 16: A Bainbridge Island resident in their 40s;

March 16: A South Kitsap resident in their 50s;

March 15: A Bremerton area resident in their 50s;

March 15: A Central Kitsap resident in their 40s;

March 13: A South Kitsap resident in their 40s;

March 10: A Bainbridge Island resident in their 70s; and

March 8: A Bainbridge Island resident in their 60s.

Kitsap County health officials reported Monday that it has had negative tests for 113 residents in the county through March 16.

Forty-eight people in Washington have died from COVID-19, the Washington State Department of Health reported Monday.

In a new assessment of the spread of COVID-19, state health officials reported Saturday that there have been 904 confirmed cases of the virus in Washington.

Seven cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Kitsap County.

According to updated guidelines the Kitsap Public Health District has received from the state Department of Health, people who should be tested include:

• Patients hospitalized with severe lower respiratory illness;

• Staff who work in any setting where health care services are delivered (including clinics, hospitals, behavioral health care clinics);

• Patients in other public safety occupations (including law enforcement, firefighters, and EMS personnel); and

• Patients who live or work in an institutional setting (including jails and other correctional facilities, long-term care facilities, homeless/shelters).

The state is recommending tests if patient symptoms worsen or if healthcare provider recommends testing for patients older than 60 years, patients with underlying medical conditions, and pregnant women.

According to the state Department of Health, there is “no need to test younger, healthy individuals with mild illness.”

Testing is also not recommended for persons who are asymptomatic (people who do not have symptoms).

Health officials also noted that a negative test result does not rule out an infection.

More in News

The scene at Central Valley Road where 63-year-old Poulsbo resident John Skubic was killed last Friday after a hit and run while riding his bike. Courtesy photo
Poulsbo cyclist killed, suspect arrested, in hit-and-run

A 63-year-old Poulsbo resident, John Skubic, was killed Friday on Central Valley… Continue reading

.
‘Soup Crawl’ in Port Orchard set for Friday and Saturday

Six restaurants along Bay Street participating in foodie event

.
Salmon habitat rules would restrict agricultural uses

By Brooklynn Hillemann WNPA Olympia News Service OLYMPIA — Advocates hope mandatory… Continue reading

.
Future fund would help close income gap, supporters say

Washington Future Fund Trust would act as a savings account for babies born under Apple Health

.
Mexican restaurant’s kitchen hit by blaze

SKFR crews limit damage due to ‘aggressive offensive attack’

A firefighter checks through the damage. Courtesy photos
Neighbor awakens family in Suquamish fire

A neighbor in Suquamish is credited with alerting a family of four… Continue reading

.
Former football coach’s court case to be heard before U.S. Supreme Court

Joe Kennedy, Bremerton School District fought over right to pray on sidelines after football games

.
Kitsap Transit may need to reduce ferry sailings due to COVID impacts

Agency says it will issue rider alerts updating customers

.
Poulsbo, Housing Kitsap combine on Nordic Cottage project

The Poulsbo City Council Wednesday approved an agreement with Housing Kitsap to… Continue reading

Most Read