The Orange County Health Department, in consultation with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH), has confirmed on Wednesday the first case of a novel coronavirus in a county resident.

The patient is in isolation.

No additional information about the patient will be released due to privacy laws.

The county is working closely with the State Department of Health to identify any close contacts of the patient who might have been exposed to ensure that appropriate precautions are taken in accordance with the latest CDC guidance.

At this time, the risk to the public is believed to below.

Local Health Officer Dr. Jose Lopez, states, “The local health department has been preparing for weeks to ensure that we have resources and systems in place to limit or prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Orange County. We are taking every step possible to identify the cause of this individual’s illness and ensure that the patient and our community stay healthy.”

Symptoms of novel coronavirus include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. This virus is most commonly spread from an infected person to others through

> respiratory droplets released into the air by coughing and sneezing
> close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands
> touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose or eyes before washing your hands; and
> rarely, fecal contamination

The best way to protect yourself from any respiratory illness, including the COVID-19, is to:

wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
>avoid touching your eyes nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
>avoid close contact with people who are sick
> stay home when you are sick
>cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash
>clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surface

The CDC does not recommend that people who are well wearing a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory illness, including COVID-19.

You should only wear a mask if a health care professional recommends it.

A facemask should be used by people who have COVID-19 and are showing symptoms to protect others form the risk of infection.

For additional information about novel coronavirus, visit