Clinics, pharmacies and hospitals interested in administering COVID-19 vaccine must enroll in the federal COVID-19 Vaccination Program. The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) is organizing the enrollment process for Washington state providers. To enroll, complete the COVID-19 Provider Inquiry Form on the DOH COVID-19 Vaccination Program Enrollment webpage (under COVID-19 Vaccination Program Enrollment). This form must be completed in order for your facility to receive a unique enrollment link, which will be sent by email to the primary contact listed in the provider inquiry form.
Don’t delay in submitting your application because you aren’t prepared to facilitate the administration of the vaccines. Approval of your enrollment does not result in an automatic delivery of vaccine. Ordering vaccine occurs on a weekly basis and you can submit an order whenever you are ready.
Per the WA State Department of Health, COVID-19 Vaccine Program:
Patients are reporting they are being turned away for second doses of COVID-19 vaccine or having their second-dose appointment canceled. There is a COVID-19 vaccine program expectation that you will offer second doses as it is important to get people full protection.
Please do not use your second-dose allocation for first doses. Not only does it cause problems for patients, it also is very difficult for the ordering and allocation process to adjust for this. DOH carefully selects allocations for first and second doses.
While more than 30 percent of people in Washington have had at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, only 19 percent have completed their series. Thank you for your help in shrinking this gap and ensuring people in Washington get full protection from this deadly disease.
Please report all positive COVID-19 cases for Spokane County residents by fax at 509.324.3623. It is unnecessary to report cases with labs performed by LabCorp, Quest, Northwest Laboratory, InCyte and Interpath as these are reported automatically by the performing laboratory. While cases are also automatically electronically reported to Spokane Regional Health District (SRHD) by Sacred Heart, Holy Family, Deaconess and Valley Hospital, hospitals must still report hospitalized cases and deaths separately.
When reporting, please include complete patient demographics (birthdate, address, phone, race/ethnicity), collection date and the specific test method used.
Facilities that are using rapid tests must report both their positive AND negative test results to the Washington State Department of Health (DOH). You may use this reporting form (one page per case). Please separate positive and negative tests into separate batches before sending. (Follow these instructions for submitting reports to the state.) The state will then forward positive results to the appropriate county.
Testing Information for Patients
Please do not advise patients to call SRHD for consultation or testing. SRHD does not provide testing nor do we have nurses on staff to assess a patient’s clinical condition. Please advise patients according to the documents below:
Test all patients with new onset of symptoms consistent with COVID-19, regardless of their age or health status. COVID-19 patients may present with cough, shortness of breath, fever and chills. However, many patients often only experience mild symptoms, including muscle pain, fatigue, congestion, headache, sore throat or new loss of taste or smell.
Rapidly testing all patients with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 is critical to identifying and isolating cases, quarantining their contacts, and suppressing community spread.
Limit testing of asymptomatic persons to those with exposure, including close contacts and individuals exposed during an outbreak in a congregate setting. (Note: close contacts still need to remain in quarantine for 14 days after their last date of exposure even with a negative test.)
The guidance further outlines additional asymptomatic people who can be considered for testing if adequate testing supplies are available. Please consult the full document.
Continue to educate all patients you test, including emphasizing isolation for ill persons and quarantine for exposed contacts:
The preferred diagnostic test is a PCR-based test.
Specimens sent to CLIA-certified labs for PCR-based tests have demonstrated higher sensitivity and fewer false negatives than point-of-care tests.
Additionally, serology or antibody tests are not recommended for making a COVID-19 diagnosis or to reliably determine whether someone has experienced a past infection with COVID-19 (more below).
The guidance further outlines the types of swabs preferred for COVID-19 testing and appropriate specimen collection and storage/transport, including self-collected nasal swabs under healthcare provider observation. Please consult the full document.
* Read the CDC overview of testing for SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) here.
Isolation & Quarantine Guidelines
Please refer to the following for an overview of COVID-19 isolation guidelines.
Patients must isolate while awaiting test results. If COVID-19 is highly suspected, the patient’s household members should be strongly advised to quarantine as well.
Patients with COVID-19 must isolate for a full 10 days after their symptom onset or positive test result (returning to normal activities on day 11) and fever must be absent for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medications.
Severe illness requiring hospitalization or severely immunocompromised patients must isolate for a full 20 days after symptom onset.
Patients who are asymptomatic at the time of their positive test who later develop symptoms must isolate for 10 days after symptom onset, not the date of their positive test.
After someone has met initial isolation criteria, they should not undergo repeat COVID-19 testing
Please refer to the following for an overview of COVID-19 quarantine guidelines.
People with known exposure must quarantine for
14 days after exposure (recommended); or,
10 days after exposure as long as no symptoms have developed and the exposed person adheres to strict masking and distancing and continues monitor symptoms through day 14.
Mask usage (by either the case or the exposed person) does not negate the need for quarantine in the exposed person, except in exposed healthcare workers wearing proper PPE.
Household members of a COVID-19 case must quarantine for 14 or 10 days (as explained above) beyond the day of last contact with the case while they were infectious. This can be as long as 20-24 days (10 days of infectiousness for case plus 10 or 14 days of standard quarantine after exposure). Note that this period starts over for uninfected household members as new cases within the household are identified.
Household members of a single exposed person (such as a child exposed in school) do not need to quarantine with the exposed person unless the exposed person develops symptoms and/or tests positive