Information courtesy of Dr. Nicholas Pennings, director of the Campbell University Health Center
As of March 6, two cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) have been identified in North Carolina. The most recent case was confirmed in Chatham County, and the first in Wake County.
Both individuals appear to have acquired the infection during travel to areas where known outbreaks of the infection have occurred. There have not been any reported cases of individuals becoming infected with COVID-19 who have NOT traveled to known areas of infection outside of North Carolina.
Currently, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services reports that both individuals are doing well and are in isolation at home. The NCDHHS is continuing to monitor anyone who was potentially exposed to these individuals.
Prevention remains the key strategy for containing the virus and minimizing your risk of infection.
Tips for prevention
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Do not share food, drinks or toothbrushes with anyone
- Clean your phone frequently
- Avoid touching your face, especially your eyes, nose and mouth
- Stay home if you are sick unless the of your illness severity requires medical attention
- Cover your cough with a tissue, then discard and wash your hands
- If you are sick, wear a face mask. Do not wear one if you are not sick
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after using the bathroom, before eating and after blowing your nose, sneezing or coughing
- If handwashing is not available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizers
- Avoid unnecessary physical contact such as handshakes, hugs and kisses
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces
Travelers who are returning from high-risk countries (China, Iran, Italy, and South Korea) and anyone that has been in contact with an individual diagnosed with COVID-19 should stay home and remain in self-isolation for 14 days. Those with potential exposure should seek medical attention for fever 100.4⁰F or higher, cough or shortness of breath. Be sure to call before going to a doctor’s office, urgent care or emergency room.
More information is available on the CDC website: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html