DOH-Marion provides COVID-19 update, guidance on face masks and wider testing at health department
April 08, 2020
OCALA, Fla.—Marion County is reporting 65 cases of COVID-19 as of 11 a.m. today. The most recent individuals confirmed to have the virus are all from Ocala and include a 34-year-old female, 41-year-old female and 49-year-old female.
“As the number of cases in our area rises, it’s vital that people practice social distancing, stay home when they are sick, and take other everyday preventive actions that help prevent the spread of the virus,” said Florida Department of Health in Marion County Administrator Mark Lander. “And if you have been tested for the virus and are waiting for results, you need to self-isolate or self-quarantine until you receive them.”
The majority of Marion County’s zip code regions have reported at least one positive case of COVID-19. The following Marion County zip codes are currently showing the highest number of cases:
- 34476 Ocala (includes Shady area) – 13
- 34491 (greater Summerfield area) – 11
- 34473 Ocala (includes Marion Oaks area) – 5 to 9
- 34480 (includes parts of Ocala, Belleview and Santos area) – 5 to 9
- 34472 (includes Silver Springs Shores) – 5 to 9
For more detailed information on all Marion cases (including zip code level data), view Florida’s COVID-19 Data and Surveillance Dashboard.
Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), recent studies show that people can spread the virus even if they aren’t experiencing any symptoms. Because of this, the CDC now recommends that individuals wear cloth face coverings* in public settings where it’s difficult to maintain social distancing.
Per the CDC, “Cloth face coverings should:
- Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
- Be secured with ties or ear loops
- Include multiple layers of fabric
- Allow for breathing without restriction
- Be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change in shape”
For more guidance on facemasks, including instructions on how to make “no sew” or sewn masks, visit CDC now. *The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators. Surgical masks and N-95 respirator masks should be reserved for healthcare workers and medical first responders.
How to Get Tested
Residents can get tested for COVID-19 at multiple places in Marion County. Places offering testing include the Department of Health, Heart of Florida Health Center, Langley Medical Center, and some primary care providers.
Testing at the Department of Health
Individuals who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, cough or shortness of breath) AND meet one or more of the following categories should call the Department of Health in Marion County’s 24/7 COVID-19 hotline (352-644-2590) to schedule an appointment:
- Over age 65
- Over age 50 and have diabetes or cardiovascular disease
- Have a doctor’s order for testing
- Health care worker
- First responder
- Recent traveler to any international locations or domestic locations (New York tri-state area, California, Louisiana, etc.) currently impacted by COVID-19
Testing at Another Medical Provider’s Facility
Contact your primary care provider to see about the possibility of testing at the provider’s office if you would like to be tested but don’t meet the above criteria for testing at the Department of Health.
If you do not have a primary care provider or if your primary care provider is unable to test, contact the following to see if you qualify for screening:
- Heart of Florida Health Center (352-732-6599, myhfhc.org/)
- Langley Medical Center (352-680-7000, langleymedicalcenter.com)
For more guidance
For the most up-to-date information on COVID-19 in Florida, visit floridahealthcovid19.gov. For general questions about COVID-19, call the state hotline (866-779-6121), local hotline (352-644-2590), or email COVIDfirstname.lastname@example.org. Individuals can also follow the Department of Health in Marion County on Twitter at www.twitter.com/FLHealthMarion for the latest updates on COVID-19 in Marion.