Governor declares public health emergency with Indiana's first coronavirus case

The Indiana State Department of Health announced a Marion County patient has tested positive for COVID-19.

The health department says the resident had recently traveled to Boston.

As a result, Governor Eric Holcomb has issued a public health emergency declaration.

“With the help of our federal, state and local partners, Indiana is responding to this case as we have planned and prepared for weeks,” Gov. Holcomb said. “The Hoosier who has been diagnosed has taken responsible steps to stay isolated.”

Samples from the patient will be sent to the Centers for Disease Control to confirm the diagnosis.

The public health emergency declaration will call on state agencies to continue their diligence and cooperation in responding to COVID-19 and ensures that Indiana can seek funding to control and stop the spread of coronavirus.

Health officials say the patient has been in quarantine since arriving back to Indianapolis and the risk to the general public is low.

The CDC will work to identify and notify air travelers who were on the individual’s flight from Boston and had close contact with the patient.

The patient will remain in isolation for 14 days and will not be released until specimens taken two consecutive days at the end of that period test negative for COVID-19.

U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski, (R-Ind.) released the following statement on Friday regarding the first case of coronavirus in Indiana:

“The first case of coronavirus in Indiana is something our public health authorities have been preparing for, and I’m confident they are doing everything possible to keep Hoosiers healthy and safe. Fortunately, because the patient and health care providers did everything right, the health risk in our communities remains low. I have been in contact with numerous state and local officials and will continue working to ensure they have the resources and information they need to fight coronavirus.

I encourage all Hoosiers to continue taking simple but important precautions: wash your hands frequently, avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth, and stay home if you are sick.”

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