Wash your hands. Again.
The Coronavirus (COVID-19) is being called “an emerging, rapidly evolving situation,” by the Centers for Disease Control or (CDC). The mainstream media covers it every day, and for good reason. The virus, that was first detected in China, is now in over 100 locations worldwide including the United States.
According to information updated on March 9 from the CDC, they are responding to this outbreak of a respiratory disease, which is caused by a novel (new) coronavirus. The virus has been named “SARS-CoV-2” and the disease it causes has been named “coronavirus disease 2019” – “COVID-19” for short.
Some people are becoming alarmed, and watching the nightly news can give an unsettling feeling. The best thing to do is be prepared as much as possible or prevent it altogether if possible.
Ripley County Health Officer Dr. David Welsh met this week with school officials at Milan, with South Ripley’s Superintendent Rob Moorhead and Nurse Marie Menchhofer attending, along with other local school officials. At the advice of Dr. Welsh, the band tour for Milan to Chicago has been postponed to May 14-17.
Superintendent Jane Rogers put out a statement noting that in Hendricks Elementary School in Avon, the news media reported a confirmed COVID-19 case. The Milan Show Choir had traveled to Avon High School last week for a competition. She said, “Since we have been informed of the confirmed case, we have consulted the Ripley County Health Department and the State Department of Health. We have verified the opportunity for exposure was no more than anyone could have at any other place.” She advised parents to keep sick children home, and if they come to school sick, they will be sent home. She shared the leading health advice:
– Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
– If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
– Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
– Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
– Stay home when you are sick.
– Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
– Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Some universities in the tri-state area have closed their campuses and are asking students to work on their studies remotely. Hospitals, nursing homes, prisons, and any place where there is a large gathering of vulnerable populations may have restrictions as the virus kicks up. It is the same practice as when the flu is in its peak. Be vigilant, wash your hands, avoid high traffic areas, and don’t panic.
You are encouraged to always have a stock pile of supplies on hand this time of year in case of power outages caused by weather, diseases that spread quickly and more. It’s all around good practice to have extra supplies on hand, but that doesn’t mean you have to buy out the store!
Editor’s note: We will keep you informed as much as possible, or go to the state health website at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/steps-when-sick.html