What's The Difference Between Lab Confirmed, Probable And Possible COVID-19 Cases?

Apr 17, 2020

Credit CDC

The Wyoming Department of Health announced it will start updating the number of probable COVID-19 cases in addition to lab confirmed cases. These are individuals that have taken the COVID-19 test and received a positive. While a probable case is someone who has had close contact with a lab-confirmed case and has symptoms consistent with COVID-19.

But Campbell and Fremont county are also keeping track of "possible cases." Jane Glaser, the executive director of Campbell County Public Health, said because the state can only test individuals considered a priority, the county decided to keep track of those who the county assumes is positive but can't get tested.

"So they have the symptoms of COVID. But they're not actually tested positive. But they have been recommended by a healthcare provider to self-isolate," explained Glaser.

Glaser said the county started keeping track of possible cases in the beginning of March when there wasn't a lot of testing available.

"We just have found it's a really good way to help alleviate some fears within symptomatic patients, and that we are working towards the safety and health concerns of everybody in the community," Glaser said.

She said possible cases are asked to self-isolate until they are free of a fever and cough for 72 hours.

Have a question about this story? Contact the reporter, Kamila Kudelska, at kkudelsk@uwyo.edu.