Regional Hospital Closed to Public After NSHC Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19

Image of coronavirus particles

A Norton Sound Health Corporation employee in Nome tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. The corporation made that announcement last night, confirming the Bering Strait region’s second case thus far.

According to NSHC, the positive COVID-19 result was found through routine employee testing at the regional hospital in Nome. The corporation says all of their Nome facilities will be closed to the public today. While the employee self-isolates, NSHC will undergo a four-day cleaning and do immediate COVID-19 testing on all of its Nome-based staff.

It is unknown how the NSHC employee contracted the virus, but the State’s Section of Epidemiology is working with the individual to do contact tracing at this time. During this morning’s daily tribal teleconference, Dr. Mark Peterson with NSHC shared little details, outside of what was already announced, about the employee’s identity, department, or status.

Norton Sound Health Corporation says it will continue to offer COVID-19 testing for all residents of the Bering Strait region, whether they’re displaying symptoms or not.

Despite previously cancelling today’s call, NSHC will host its daily tribal teleconference this morning at 11am. The call-in line is 1-800-315-6338; access code: 03286#. If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 you can call Primary Care in Nome at 443-3333.

Image at top: Particles from the coronavirus. Photo in the public domain via Creative Commons.