FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, March 30, 2020
Semi-Weekly Media Update
From the Calhoun County Public Health Department
As of March 30, 2020, at 4 p.m., Calhoun County has a cumulative total of 17 confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported to the Calhoun County Public Health Department (CCPHD).

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have reported instances across the country of severe illnesses associated with the use of products, including non-pharmaceutical Choloquine Phosphate, in an attempt to prevent and treat COVID-19. Because this is the first time that COVID-19 has been present in humans, there are no vaccines to prevent or drugs to treat COVID-19 yet .

Pharmaceutical chloroquine phosphate and hydroxychloroquine sulfate are approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat specific medical conditions, such as malaria, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis. Currently, these medications are being studied and evaluated as a treatment for COVID-19; however, their efficacy to either prevent or treat this infection are unknown. 

While Calhoun residents continue to shelter at home, CCPHD reminds our community that social distancing and maintaining good hygiene practices—like frequent handwashing—are still currently the best methods to combat COVID-19.

The use of unapproved and un-researched prevention and treatment methods could prove dangerous to you and your family. Misleading claims may cause people to delay or stop appropriate medical treatment, or individuals may face unintended harm from negative effects of a “treatment” interacting with bodily system functions or essential medications.

Recommendations for the public:
  1. Do not ingest aquarium-use products or any other chemicals that contain chloroquine phosphate or that have claims to combat COVID-19. The use of unproven medications/chemicals can lead to serious health consequences including death.
  2. Medications should only be taken when prescribed by and under the supervision of your healthcare provider and always according to the instructions provided. This includes chloroquine phosphate and hydroxychloroquine sulfate.
  3. Seek immediate medical attention if you or a family member is experiencing any unexpected symptoms after ingesting any of these fraudulent treatments or medications by contacting your healthcare provider or the poison control center (1-800-222-1222).
  4. If you have a question about a treatment or test found online, talk to your healthcare provider or doctor.

Eric Pessell, Health Officer for CCPHD stated, “We need to be mindful of the health of the whole community with our actions. Take care of yourself by using trusted sources for information on COVID-19 prevention. Right now, we do not have a treatment or vaccination to protect against this illness. The best thing you can do is stay home, wash your hands, and, when you must go out, practice social distancing.”

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For updates from Calhoun County, about County operations and COVID-19 counts in Calhoun County, visit the County website,  calhouncountymi.gov . Case counts will be updated twice daily.
 
For updates from the City of Battle Creek, please visit  battlecreekmi.gov/coronavirus .
 
The State’s COVID-19 Hotline is available for anyone who has questions or concerns related to the virus. The hotline is open seven days a week from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Call 1-888-535-6136. For state COVID-19 information, visit  michigan.gov/coronavirus
For information, contact
Lucy Blair, Calhoun County Communications Manager
269-781-0926,  lblair@calhouncountymi.gov

Jessica Vanderkolk, City of Battle Creek Communications Manager