To help minimize the risk of asymptomatic spread of COVID-19 during procedures, all patients scheduled for surgery, endoscopy, bronchoscopy, or any other aerosol generating procedures are required to be tested for COVID-19 within 72 hours of the procedure. Patients with a known history of COVID-19 do not need to be tested again prior to a procedure. Follow the COVID-19 Pre-Op and Pre-Procedural Testing Algorithm for guidance on when to use COVID precautions.
To schedule a pre-procedure COVID-19 test, a LAB9309 order must first be placed by the referring physician. The appointment can then be scheduled form the order as outlined in this EPIC workflow. Results will be available in 24-48 hours. Testing can be scheduled at the patient’s closest Pre-Procedural Testing Site. If the patient lives more than 50 miles away from a testing site, it may be possible to do a same day rapid test on the day of the procedure. Same day rapid tests must be approved in advance by contacting both the Clinical/Procedural Department AND the Lab team at the facility performing the procedure. For same day rapid testing the patient must arrive at 5 a.m. the day of procedure to complete the rapid test and ensure test results are available prior to procedure start time.
Antibody testing is available to all providers. The test requires a blood draw and can be ordered in EPIC as “COVID-19 (SARS CoV-2) IgG Antibody,” LAB9807. Blood draws for antibody testing can be done in any Ochsner lab or Urgent Care during normal hours of operations. See linked huddle helper for more details on specimen collection for the antibody test. The antibody test results are usually provided within 24-36 hours of collection, depending on the testing location.
A COVID-19 antibody test determines if a person’s immune system has created antibodies in response to past COVID-19 infection. It can take 1–3 weeks after infection for the body to make antibodies. Antibody testing is an important tool for surveillance and epidemiologic studies to help understand the spread of the virus in the general population. CDC does not recommend using antibody testing for diagnosis of current infection. If a person is suspected to have a post-infectious syndrome caused by SARS-CoV-2 infection (e.g., Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children; MIS-C), an antibody test may be used to help with diagnosis.
It is important to note that a positive antibody test does not prove that a person is immune to future infection with COVID-19. There is not enough information at this time to determine what defines COVID-19 immunity and how long immunity may last. Those with a positive antibody test should be aware that they have been previously infected. Individuals with a negative antibody test have not developed antibodies to COVID-19 but the negative result does not necessarily rule out that they were ever previously infected because some people do not develop detectable antibodies following infection. Whether the patient’s antibody test result is positive or negative, he or she must continue to follow the latest social distancing, PPE and infection control recommendations to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
If you feel sick and have symptoms consistent with COVID-19, please call our COVID-19 Info Hotline at 1-844-888-2772 for assistance and guidance on whether an in-person visits is needed.
You can quickly connect with a provider through Ochsner Anywhere Care, a consumer-facing virtual visit platform for urgent care visits. You could download the free Ochsner Anywhere Care mobile app on iOS or Android as well as online through a computer at www.ochsner.org/anywherecare.
Yes, it recommended to get a COVID test if you develop COVID-19 symptoms, even if mild.
If you know you have been exposed to a presumptive positive case, you should follow CDC guidelines and quarantine for 14 days after the close contact (less than 6 feet apart for more than 15 minutes): https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/quarantine.html
Routine testing of asymptomatic people is not recommended. Limited tests are available at community testing sites for asymptomatic persons. Locations and dates of community testing centers are available here: https://www.ochsner.org/testing
If you are asymptomatic and require a COVID-19 test for return to school or travel, please call your preferred Ochsner Urgent Care location to check availability and reserve your test. There are limited number of tests available per day.
Ochsner Health and Ochsner LSU Health System North Louisiana have a systemwide protocol in place at each of our facilities for the screening and isolation of any patient suspected of having the disease. Additionally, we immediately notify the proper parties, including the Louisiana Department of Health. All employees, visitors and patients are required to wear a mask to protect each other.
No, testing is not routinely recommended prior to travel or visiting others. A negative test result only means that you did not have COVID-19 at the time your sample was collected. It does not mean that you can’t get sick hours later and potentially spread the virus to others. If you have symptoms of COVID, self-isolate, do not travel or visit others. If asymptomatic, continue to take precautions when visiting anyone outside your household: wear a mask and keep at least 6 feet apart.
Re-testing for ‘clearance’ of the virus is not recommended. We use a symptom or time based method to determine when someone is no longer infectious and can stop isolation:
Testing is not required for everyone with a confirmed exposure. After a confirmed exposure, you need to quarantine for 14 days from last close contact with the person who tested positive. Close contact is defined as being less than 6 feet apart for greater than 15 minutes. If you develop symptoms, get a test. However, if the test is negative, you must still complete the full 14 days of quarantine. A negative test result only means that you did not have COVID-19 at the time your sample was collected. Infection can happen up until 14 days after exposure.
This depends on a few factors. Did the babysitter have close contact (within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes) with the kids in the 2 days before or at time after developing symptoms? (If asymptomatic, in the two days before or any time after testing positive?) If no, then your parents can watch the kids while taking normal precautions (wear masks, maintain at least 6 feet of distance when possible and wash hands frequently). If yes, the kids should be in quarantine for 14 days from their last contact with the babysitter. Ideally kids will quarantine with their parents and/or other household members.
Another factor to consider is your parents risk for severe illness from COVID-19. Are they older than 65 or do they have certain medical conditions such as cancer or diabetes that put them at increased risk? If so, they should protect themselves and not visit or care for the kids while they are in quarantine. If that is the only option for childcare or if your parents live in the same house, they should take extra precautions: limit contact with the children during their quarantine, wear masks and wash hands frequently. Children older than 2 years should wear masks during their quarantine period (except when sleeping or eating or in a room by themselves).
Did your child have close contact (within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes) with the you in the 2 days before or at time after you started having symptoms? If you never had symptoms but tested positive, did your child have close contact with the you in the 2 days before or at time after you tested positive? If so, your child does need to stay home from school and quarantine for 14 days after last close contact with you. If close contact can’t be avoided, your child will have to quarantine until 14 days after your self-isolation period is over.
The immune response, including duration of immunity, to SARS-CoV-2 infection is not yet understood. Patients infected with other viruses in the same family are unlikely to be re-infected shortly (e.g., 3 months or more) after they recover. However, more information is needed to know whether similar immune protection will be observed for patients with COVID-19. You should continue to protect yourself from infection even after your recovery.
Masks or face coverings are recommended for everyone over the age of 2 years. If you have trouble breathing or underlying respiratory conditions, that is even more of reason for you to wear a mask and protect yourself from COVID-19. If you have trouble breathing with the mask on, limit your time in public and stay home as much as possible.
No. A negative test result only means that you did not have COVID-19 at the time your sample was collected. Infection can happen up until 14 days after exposure, so quarantine for the full 14 days is required.
No, hydroxychloroquine is NOT effective for COVID-19. Multiple large clinical trials have found that hydroxychloroquine is not effective and has no role in it the treatment of COVID-19. In addition, a large clinical trial found that using hydroxychloroquine to prevent getting COVID-19 was not beneficial and resulted in more side effects compared to patients taking a placebo. Azithromycin does not treat COVID. Azithromycin should only be taken when prescribed by your physician.
We don’t know yet, but national health leaders are hopeful a vaccine will be ready by the end of 2020.
It is important to consider the full spectrum of risks involved in both in-person and virtual learning options. Parents, guardians, and caregivers should weigh the relative health risks of COVID-19 transmission from in-personal instruction against the educational, social-behavioral, and emotional risks of providing no in-person instruction when deciding between these two options.
Schools should have plans in place across 4 key areas to reduce the spread of COVID-19:
Indoor gyms are considered a higher risk location for COVID-19 spread. During exercise, people can expel droplets further than the usual 6 feet. That risk can be mitigated if everyone is wearing a mask, social distancing, and frequently washing hands. The facility should limit the total number of occupants and increase ventilation and cleaning of equipment.
Travel increases your chance of getting and spreading COVID-19. Staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others from COVID-19. Don’t travel if you are sick or if you have been around someone with COVID-19 in the past 14 days. Don’t travel with someone who is sick. Before you travel, consider the following:
If you decide to travel, take steps to protect yourself and others from COVID-19: