The strain of COVID-19 infection that eventually killed four Alder Bay Assisted Living residents reportedly began with a methamphetamine dealer who dismissed public health advice and refused to isolate himself, Humboldt County Public Health Nurse Erica Dykehouse said. said the famous author Michael Lewis, who was penning a column for Bloomberg.
Lewis column, “Confessions of a Nurse from CAVID in California” focuses on Dykehouse’s contact tracking investigations, in which she works back from a positive COVID-19 test, trying to find all the new positive case that may have exposed them to the deadly virus. It provides an enlightening overview of the work, as well as a level of detail about cases that local officials have so far refused to offer.
“Two cases had stuck in Erica’s mind. One was a couple in the ’70s, both probably sticky. She would find them, tell them of quarantine, and they would return immediately and host a Fourth of July BBQ. When she tried to contact guests who might have been infected, she found them as rejected or stern. “You have all these little social networks that are hostile,” she said. “Most of the time they are polite enough just to sit down. But I’m trying to create thick skin.”
The other case that stuck in her head was the meth trader. Public Health Nurses had learned of him immediately after he became infected and, although he did not reject their advice, said he would be isolated. Erica suspected he was still sneezing at night, and her suspicion was confirmed when he infected a friend of his, who in turn infected his bride. The friend’s mother-in-law, who had no symptoms, went to her job at Alder Bay Assisted Living, a nursing home in Eureka. More than a dozen staff members and residents became infected. Four died “
Chief Humboldt County Information Officer Officer Heather Muller declined to confirm the specific details of Lewis’s reporting cases.
“Some of the information was shared with the reporter that could jeopardize the privacy of those involved,” Muller wrote in an email to diary. “Because of this, the Joint Information Center cannot confirm this information.”
Elsewhere in the column, Dykehouse is quoted as saying that while the criteria have changed repeatedly over the course of the pandemic, since June her contact investigations have generally focused on a single question: Who were you within 6 feet for more? se 15 minutes? But in addition to the specific details of the case, the biggest takeaway from the column is Dykhouse saying that more and more people are no longer cooperating with contact investigations and instead are hanging on to it, not returning her calls or losing them. out.
In the beginning, they would be cooperative. Although no one was happy to hear that they had COVID-19, people respected her authority. They behaved as much as people had before the pandemic when she told them they should be isolated. … And they did their best to reconcile – at least until mid-May, immediately after the country order for housing was lifted. From that point on, her diary tells the story of an unsatisfactory change. People had less and less interest in what she had to say: they seemed to think they knew everything they needed to know. “A lot of these people are getting their medical information from Facebook,” Erica said. People stopped the return of her calls. People hung on to it. People even jumped into it. “It’s the first time in this job that I’m experiencing people who depend on me – except with STDs,” Erica said. ‘Most of the time you call and say,‘ I am a Public Health nurse ’and they talk to you or call you back. We are used to people who trust us. Now they do not. This has been very strange. ‘… But at the end of June, Erica and her colleagues thought everything was going in the wrong direction. “We feel like we are losing control of the situation,” said one of the county health officers. “People are taking it and we do not know where.” “
In her email to diary, Muller said Dykehouse ‘s views do not necessarily reflect those of the county.
“The interview reflects the impressions and experiences of the employees who participated in it and does not necessarily reflect the broader experience of the Public Health staff or the status of the ongoing operation,” she wrote before focusing on emphasizing the importance of timely testing. “When a circuit as small as ours takes on a particular set of issues, we run the risk of overloading our resources. That’s why contact testing and tracking are so important.”
As of July 1, Humboldt County has confirmed 95 new COVID-19 cases, 42 percent of the county total so far.
Lewis is the author of more than a dozen books, including Poker Liar’s, Moneyball, The blind side, Big Short and Flash boys. Its entirety Bloomberg the column is worth reading and can be found here.