EDITOR'S NOTE: The following press release was posted without editing.

Henry County Medical Center received confirmation of our first known positive COVID-19 patient in Henry County.  The patient’s collection was at Henry County Medical Center on March 19 and sent to LabCorp.

While awaiting results, the patient quarantined at home.  The patient is still at home and is reportedly doing fine.  This confirmed case is not yet documented on the TN Department of Health’s website, but should appear soon.

Yesterday (Friday), HCMC reported that they are currently treating a positive COVID-19 patient from another county in our facility.  The patient is serious, but stable at this time.

“We at HCMC are continuously updating processes and procedures as released by the CDC and State Health Department, with respect to COVID-19,” said Lisa Casteel, HCMC CEO.  “We instituted outside testing where you can remain in your vehicle and we have prepared to receive you inside our facility should you need us. As this virus moves through our country, we encourage social distancing, hand hygiene, and self-quarantine if necessary. Our prayers are over the entire community during this time.”

HCMC is dedicated to providing truthful, transparent information and report information to necessary sources as required by law.

To date, HCMC has collected 76 test samples that have been sent to commercial and state labs for testing.  This is only the test that HCMC has done with inpatients, through the Emergency Room, or through our drive through located outside the Emergency Department.  This does not include any tests collected at other facilities, provider offices, or the health department, just those completed at HCMC.

Again, if you believe you meet the criteria for the coronavirus including having the symptoms, traveling outside the United States or in the domestic hot spots associated with COVID – 19, or being in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, please call your primary care provider to arrange for medical evaluation and testing.  If you present to our Emergency Department without a provider order for testing, you will be registered as an ER patient and be treated and charged as an ER patient, as well as masked and isolated.  If you have an order for testing from your provider, you will be instructed to park in the ER parking lot and a clinical staff member will come out and do the testing through our outpatient lab services.

How you can help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses such as Coronavirus:

  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then discard in a trash.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

HCMC is making every effort to educate and inform the public on ways to remain healthy through our website and our social media outlets, including specifically rigorous and frequent hand washing.  Please check back often for updates including a section dedicated to COVID-19.  For additional information, watch a video from our Community Pop Up event on coronavirus here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N-iA5IPc4G8&t=3s

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your health care provider.  To learn more, go to our website at www.hcmc-tn.org or go to the CDC website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/index.html

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