LEWISTON — A person in Nez Perce County who is younger than 60 years old has been identified as the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in north central Idaho and is isolating at home.

That announcement came at an evening news conference held Tuesday by officials at Public Health — Idaho North Central District.

The case is the third in the region. The other two are in Whitman County. Garfield and Asotin counties in southeastern Washington and Latah, Clearwater, Idaho and Lewis counties in north central Idaho have no confirmed cases.

The individual in Nez Perce County is not believed to have contracted the illness through international travel, but no other details were shared about the person, including their gender or what city they live in.

“We will notify people who have been close contacts,” said health district nurse Mike Larson.

These people will be asked to stay home and stay monitored for symptoms of COVID-19, such as respiratory issues.

Health district representatives won’t be recommending changes for health care providers because of the case and will continue to be in daily communication with leaders of north central Idaho municipalities.

“The risk of spread is still low from this specific case,” Larson said.

The north central district is the last health district in Idaho to have a case, which Larson attributed to luck and the area’s rural nature as opposed to the amount of testing that has happened.

Numerous individuals have been tested based on an evaluation of their risk factors.

The best measures people can take now are to follow the guidelines that have been shared since the coronavirus became a concern, such as washing their hands, staying at home if they are sick and covering their mouths when they cough, said District Director Carol Moehrle.

“We’ve been expecting this,” she said.

Elaine Williams may be contacted at ewilliam@lmtribune.com or (208) 848-2261.

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