MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. - One Maryland mother says she's living a nightmare trying to get her daughter tested for coronavirus in Montgomery County.
“I honestly don’t know what to do,” says a very upset Siobhan Kopp.
Kopp tells FOX 5 her daughter is a University of Maryland student who returned from Spain on Friday. Kopp says tha'ts when her daughter experienced shortness of breath. Kopp, who is a nurse, says she gave her daughter a nebulizer treatment for her daughter’s asthma and discovered a fever after taking her temperature.
Kopp wanted her daughter to be tested for coronavirus. The Maryland mother says she followed directions to bring her daughter to Holy Cross Germantown Hospital. However, Kopp says when she arrived, she was told doctors could not immediately test her daughter for Coronavirus. FOX 5 was also told the hospital did offer to test Kopp’s daughter for the flu first and suggested her daughter quarantine.
“I’m at a loss here because I’m here trying to protect my daughter. I’m not trying to blame anybody but come on, we’ve got to get real here. This stuff is serious. I mean, I saw how fast from last night to this morning, how my child went downhill,” said Kopp.
Montgomery County’s Chief Health Officer, Dr. Travis Gayles, Gayles told FOX 5 on Friday that "testing response has been woefully inadequate at the federal level and we at the local health departments, we’re working with hospital partners, our clinical partners to figure out how to level access to private laboratories.”
“Right now the testing algorithms are prioritizing individuals who have clinical symptoms, who may also be considered at risk based upon potential exposure, potential travel histories, um, a known contact with individuals who may have tested positive,” Dr. Gayles said.
FOX 5 did also check with a Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services spokesperson who confirmed the county is following CDC testing guidelines. The information is also available on the county’s health department website.
“If you have returned from China, South Korea, Italy, Japan or Iran in the last two weeks AND have symptoms, call ahead to your medical provider to let them know you are coming," the website says.
When FOX 5 asked about Spain, we were told Spain is still not on the CDC testing guidelines list.
Kopp said she and her daughter are both taking the necessary precautions to limit any potential exposure and are now both under self-quarantine.
A spokeswoman for Holy Cross Health says "we would never turn a patient away and we are committed to providing care for each individual we serve." The hospital says it is following state guidelines.