DENISON, Tex. (KXII) A Texoma teen sick since Wednesday was told to self-quarantine due to symptoms similar to COVID-19. Due to the limited supply of test kits in Texas, doctors have not confirmed her case.
"When I first got the news that we had a second week of spring break, I didn't really take it seriously. Instead, I went and hung out with friends," said 17-year-old Madilynn Williams.
But soon after Williams started feeling sick.
"Tuesday she started not feeling well after she got home from work. And it just progressed from then. On Wednesday she was coughing, sinus issues, she was running a fever," said family friend, Melinda Lilly.
Lilly took her to the ER The next day she had trouble breathing
"They tested her for the flu, for strep, she was negative," said Lilly.
From there Williams was sent to visit another local ER for more testing.
"The ER doctor advised her that she most likely has the virus, but they did not have testing available for her," said Lilly.
On Friday Lilly made calls; first to the local health department, then the CDC.
"I explained the situation and she gave me a number for the Texas state health department and told me to contact them," said Lilly.
But phone calls continued; next, the state health department, then transferred to 211 and given the U.S. coronavirus hotline. They reached out to a fourth ER who claimed to have test kits.
"Because there's a shortage, she pretty much needed to have problems breathing as she's walking across the floor," said Lilly.
Every doctor said her symptoms point to COVID-19, but Williams' condition keeps getting worse.
"Now my chest is hurting, my throat this morning I felt like I had like knives in my throat," said Williams.
She says doctors tell her because she's young and healthy her symptoms shouldn't be serious.
"But at the same time I may not be feeling as sick as other people, I still have the virus which is very scary for me being young and how if it does affect me like really badly I still have my whole life ahead of me," said Williams.
She has this message for young people like her.
"I would definitely tell them no matter what at least stay inside and isolate yourself for two weeks," said Williams.
A local doctor commented about Williams' case and what the community needs to know.
Dr. Alex Roby explained that right now, especially in Grayson County, tests and facilities are limited which leaves doctors with their hands tied.
Those who are 60 and older, or have other health issues that can worsen symptoms are being considered a higher risk until they can get more tests. But Roby says that the family acted appropriately by following what professionals told them.
"I think the misunderstanding here is that it's not confirmed, it's assumed. And the reason we tell people to assume that they have this infection is that way we can really get people's cooperation with reference to quarantine and flatten the curve," said Roby.
Roby, Williams, and her family continue to spread the message of taking responsibility as individuals and stay home to avoid the virus spread.