Fourteen new COVID-19 cases on the Fort Hall Reservation

Pictured: Welcome to Fort Hall, Home of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes sign.(Photo: Jackie McNeel)

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84 positive cases since the pandemic started in early April

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Shoshone-Bannock Tribes - Tribal Office of Emergency Management

The Tribal Office of Emergency Management (TOEM) officially reports fourteen (14) new COVID-19 cases on the Fort Hall Reservation, bringing the total to 84 overall positive cases since the pandemic started in early April. Of the 84 cases, 29 are currently being monitored, 44 have recovered, 2 are currently hospitalized and 1 confirmed death. Test results are compiled and reported by the Fort Hall Indian Health Clinic and Community Health Center (HRSA).

The Fort Hall Indian Health Clinic conducted 14 tests on Monday, August 3 and seven came back positive. Of the seven, three (3) are Shoshone-Bannock on the reservation and the remaining four (4) are Native American living off the reservation. Today, Tuesday, August 4, 32 tests were conducted and 5 came back positive as of 3:20 p.m. with more results to come in later this evening.

Fort Hall Indian Health Clinic and Community Health Center also completed 25 tests this past Saturday and 5 tests on Monday, receiving one positive result from Saturday and one positive from Monday, these numbers have been added to the total positive/monitored cases. To date 395 tests have been completed by the Fort Hall Indian Health Clinic and Community Health Center.

Pictured: Fort Hall COVID-19 chart - August 4, 2020.
Pictured: Fort Hall COVID-19 chart - August 4, 2020.(Image:Shoshone-Bannock Tribes - Tribal Office of Emergency Management)

Last week, Fort Hall Clinic set a regional record by conducting 35 tests in one day for a single Abbott ID NOW machine. The machine is a rapid molecular COVID19 testing machine that allows for fast diagnosis in less than 15-minutes. The Fort Hall Clinic has testing capacity to conduct 20-25 tests per day with a quick turnaround time. In the region, the clinic has the fastest testing in comparison to the local health centers. The Clinic also announced hiring a new lab tech, a new PA and new LPN. The clinic currently has 61 Abbott test kits left and are waiting on supplies to re-stock from the Portland Area office. 

Tribal health officials are seeing COVID-19 affect our local elders by direct contact with a positive case from within their home. Tribal Office of Emergency Management stresses to the younger generation to please wear a facemask when you are outside of your home and wash your hands when you return home. If you feel sick, quarantine yourself from your elderly family members and call Fort Hall Clinic at 208-238-5400 to speak with a health official to get tested

According to Tribal Health officials, if you are contacted by a ‘Contract Tracer’, the individual will be instructed to isolate and schedule a testing immediately. COVID symptoms include a fever (temperature 100.4 or higher), cough, shortness of breath, headache, muscle and body aches, sore throat, fatigue/extreme tiredness, GI symptoms (nausea, vomiting, diarrhea), and loss of taste and smell. Each of our Tribal health centers, including Indian Health Service, Tribal Health and Fort Hall Indian Health Clinic and Community Health Center have tribal contact tracers actively monitoring positive individuals. Due to the increase of positive cases, Contract Tracers are being hired at Fort Hall Indian Health Clinic and Community Health Center and Tribal Health.

We encourage families to help ‘do your part’ by communicating with your loved ones to take action on implement good habits to prevent the spread of germs, here are some helpful tips:

  1. Avoid close contact with people who are sick. Stay at home if you are sick, except to get medical care.
  2. WEAR A FACE MASK- the Tribes now mandate a facemask to be worn in all tribal facilities.
  3. Avoid public gatherings (Recommendation from CDC is 10 people or less, this includes birthday gatherings, family BBQ’s, sweat lodges, peyote meetings, partying, etc.).
  4. Wash hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds, especially blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing or have been in a public place (Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue). If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  5. Avoid touching your face, nose, eyes, etc.
  6. Clean and disinfect your home frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  7. Avoid all non-essential Travel to hot spots outside of your area.

For any health concerns, please call Fort Hall Indian Health Service (I.H.S) at 208-238-5400 (Monday-Friday, 8-5 p.m.) or Community Health Center (HRSA) 208-478-3987. Please note there has been an increase of phone calls, so please be patient with both health facilities. For tribal resources check out the Tribes COVID19 website at www.sbtribes.com and click on COVID19. For general questions on Idaho COVID-19, call the Hotline at 1-888-330-3010.

Shoshone-Bannock Tribes - Tribal Office of Emergency Management
(Shoshone-Bannock Tribes - Tribal Office of Emergency Management)
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