Steps To Help Prevent The Coronavirus
March 3, 2020
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) want Americans to take some preparedness and prevention steps – but not to panic – due to the possibility of a COVID-19 (or Coronavirus) outbreak in their neighborhood. We have compiled some general information along with a few of the CDC’s useful safety tips below.
General Information On The Coronavirus
COVID-19, which stands for Coronavirus disease 2019, is a contagious respiratory illness. The virus, which scientists and doctors assume first originated from an animal source, is now able to spread between close human contacts (e.g. healthcare workers exposed to infected individuals). The first recorded case of the virus that causes COVID-19 in the United States was on January 21st of this year, and the CDC is closely monitoring the situation.
Experts do not yet know exactly how – or how easily – the virus spreads between people. But the Coronavirus does come with certain recognizable warning signs. People suffering from COVID-19 have a mild to severe respiratory illness accompanied by symptoms such as shortness of breath, fever, and cough. The virus can be deadly because in some patients it causes pneumonia in both lungs, which can lead to severe complications. The CDC recommends that people who traveled to China within the last 14 days and who are feeling ill (with any of the known symptoms of COVID-19) seek medical care in order to be treated and to help prevent spreading the illness.
How To Prevent Spreading Germs
The agency has also provided an array of helpful precautions and preventive actions that people should take to limit the spread of respiratory illnesses in general, which includes COVID-19. Here are just a few steps that you and your loved ones can take to avoid getting sick or passing on germs:
- Avoid contact with people who are sick,
- Wash your hands often with soap and water – and make sure to do it for at least 20 seconds.
- If soap and water are not available to you, clean your hands with alcohol-based hand sanitizer (containing a minimum 60% alcohol), and:
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth without first washing your hands
The CDC also recommends that if a person is sick that he or she stay at home (unless they need care from a medical professional). Other effective ways to prevent spreading sicknesses is to cover coughs or sneezes. For example, sneeze into the crook of your arm and not your hand or sneeze into tissues (then throw the tissue away). Also, clean and disinfect all frequently used or touched objects and surfaces.
CDC officials are urging Americans to remember not panic. Instead, they say to liken preparing for COVID-19 to the steps you would take before a natural disaster, like a blizzard or hurricane. The virus and its associated complications are treatable, though there is not yet a Coronavirus-specific vaccine – it is just important to seek treatment quickly. If you feel ill with any type of respiratory illness, it is advisable to consult directly with a medical professional.
We will continue to keep our readers updated as this story develops.
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