Pensacola woman describes COVID-19 testing and isolation as she awaited results

Coronavirus

PENSACOLA, Fla. (WKRG) — A 71-year-old woman who tested negative for COVID-19 is talking with News 5 about the experience as she waited for her results in complete isolation for eight days.

“It was exhausting trying to get through the day and to keep in perspective what are the important things in life,” Karen Jurkowich said.

Jurkowich traveled by plane earlier this month and was starting to feel sick. She reached out to her primary care physician and she was quickly tested for COVID-19. While she was glad she did it, the swab in the nasal cavity was rough.

“I tell you it is not a pleasant experience,” she said. “It just feels like it’s reaching back to your eyeballs.”

They told her the swab would be sent to Jacksonville and test results would be back in 7-10 days so hers was on time.

“While there was some degree of relief because I got a negative test, the other part of that was, my life has been on hold, for eight days,” she said.

She just now wants people to know the tests don’t have rapid results and with them taking a week or longer to get the results, it could be weeks before we get more accurate local positive numbers.

“It’s going to be another couple of weeks before we get an accurate description so I would just beg folks to not say it’s okay now..nothing’s happening ..we can go on about our business. No. Don’t. Stay put. Stay in your homes.”

Jurkowich says she is continuing to stay inside and isolate herself from others as much as possible and encourages everyone else, especially those older than 60, to do the same.

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*Maps provided by Alabama, Florida, and Mississippi Departments of Public Health

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