CORONAVIRUS: New quarantine mandates detailed Featured

Kansas Department of Health and Environment Director Dr. Lee Norman Kansas Department of Health and Environment Director Dr. Lee Norman Kansas Department of Health and Environment screenshot

After announcing changes in criteria for coronavirus testing, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment issued new quarantine mandates Monday.

Based on the new directives, automatic 14-day quarantines will be needed for people who traveled to Illinois or New Jersey on or after March 23. Quarantines were already mandated for residents who had traveled to California, Florida, New York and Washington state on or after March 15, as well as four Colorado counties -- Eagle, Summit, Pitkin and Gunnison -- on or after March 8.

Residents who traveled on a cruise ship or internationally also must be quarantined.

KDHE is trying to conserve testing capabilities and the number of tests as the caseload increases. To that end, it is limiting tests to the following:

*Healthcare workers and first responders who have symptoms of COVID-19
*Potential clusters of unknown respiratory illnesses. Priority is given to long-term care facilities and healthcare facilities
*Hospitalized patients with no alternative diagnosis
*Individuals over age 60 with symptoms of COVID-19. Priority will be given to residents in nursing homes, long-term care facilities or other "congregate" settings
*Individuals with underlying health conditions that would be treated differently if they were infected by COVID-19

Right now, tests are being conducted only with a medical provider's order -- and only if patients present a risk after completing both a verbal and physical health screen. Tests for patients that do not meet the state's criteria will be sent to a Lenexa lab. Turnaround time is two to three days. Cost is $98 and is billed through a patient's insurance coverage.

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