Health Department Updates COVID-19 Case Data and Quarantine Period

Date: August 18, 2020

HAMILTON COUNTY, TN - The Hamilton County Health Department is adding ­­83 new COVID-19 cases today, along with 90 historical probable cases, for a total of 173 cases. This is a “data catch up” on probable cases that have been determined to be Hamilton County cases and have not been previously counted.

According to the CDC, a probable case:

  • Meets clinical criteria AND epidemiologic evidence with no confirmatory laboratory testing performed for COVID-19.
  • Meets presumptive laboratory evidence AND either clinical criteria OR epidemiologic evidence.
  • Meets vital records criteria with no confirmatory laboratory testing performed for COVID-19.

The Hamilton County Health Department has been including probable cases in their daily case count since the end of June.

Probable and confirmed cases are treated equally in contact tracing, isolation and quarantine actions.

The Health Department is committed to clear and transparent data, which is why they are noting this data merge and the updating of negative tests that is ongoing.

Additionally, the State of Tennessee issued new quarantine guidance for household contacts of a positive person. The household contact’s 14-day quarantine period will not begin until the positive person in the household has completed their minimum 10-day isolation. The Hamilton County Health Department updated their policy on the date the State issued the guidance.

This new guideline means household contacts will often need to stay home for a minimum of 24 days, depending on onset of symptoms, which could extend the quarantine period longer. It is imperative to follow this guidance closely as the virus can be incubating during this timeframe. Leaving quarantine too soon can result in the spread of COVID-19.

For more information on COVID-19, call the Health Department’s hotline at (423) 209-8383, or visit their website at Health.HamiltonTN.org.