Asymptomatic patient reportedly had surgery at ASC before COVID-19 diagnosis

The first patient in Gothenburg, Neb., to be diagnosed with COVID-19 had surgery at North Platte (Neb.) Surgery Center before beginning to show symptoms, according to the Gothenburg Leader.

The patient returned to Gothenburg March 3 from a trip to Denver, then reportedly had surgery at North Platte Surgery Center March 4.

Surgery center officials contacted the Two Rivers Public Health Department after learning March 25 through a news report that one of the center's patients may have been diagnosed with COVID-19, administrator Leslie Voigt, BSN, RN, told Becker's ASC Review.

"At no time was the surgery center — North Platte Surgery Center — at any risk, or we would have been notified," Ms. Voigt said they were told by the public health director. The director did not confirm the patient's name to the center.

However, records show the ASC only had one surgical patient from the area in question on March 4, according to Ms. Voigt.

The patient thought to have been treated at North Platte Surgery Center initially experienced soreness and assumed it was surgery-related. The patient visited Gothenburg Health March 13 for a follow-up appointment, where a physician ordered a COVID-19 test as a precaution.

The patient didn't begin showing other common symptoms of the novel coronavirus until March 16, when she had a sore throat and a low-grade fever. On March 18, the patient reported a spike in fever, coughing and fatigue. Over the next several days, the cough worsened and the patient's temperature fluctuated. The patient experienced constant body aches.

Due to an underlying medical condition, the patient reportedly experienced chest pain, had an elevated heart rate and coughed up blood.

Now in isolation at home, the patient is taking Mucinex and cough syrup to help alleviate COVID-19 symptoms. The patient's family is in quarantine.

More articles on surgery centers:
21 ASCs with coronavirus restrictions or closures
How gastroenterology practices are responding to COVID-19
How COVID-19 has affected Tenet, HCA Healthcare and Surgery Partners' shares

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