Coronavirus Update from Town of North Hempstead (March 4, 2020; 11:20pm EST)

 

Good evening,

As your Town Supervisor, I wanted to share the following information, prepared by the CDC, to provide you with helpful answers to some frequently asked questions about the coronavirus. Although there are currently no confirmed cases of the virus in Nassau County, out of an abundance of caution, and in the interest of prevention, I felt it was important to help keep you informed. Please feel free to share this note with your friends and family.

Q: What is a novel coronavirus?

A: A novel coronavirus is a new coronavirus that has not been previously identified. The virus causing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), is not the same as the coronaviruses that commonly circulate among humans and cause mild illness, like the common cold.

Q: What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

A: Current symptoms reported for patients with COVID-19 have included mild to severe respiratory illness with fever, cough, and difficulty breathing.

Q: What is the source of the virus?

A: Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Some cause illness in people, and others, such as canine and feline coronaviruses, only infect animals. Rarely, animal coronaviruses that infect animals have emerged to infect people and can spread between people. This is suspected to have occurred for the virus that causes COVID-19.

Q: How does the virus spread?

A: This virus was first detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. The first infections were linked to a live animal market, but the virus is now spreading from person-to-person. It’s important to note that person-to-person spread can happen on a continuum. Some viruses are highly contagious (like measles), while other viruses are less so.

Q: How can I help protect myself from COVID-19?

A: The following is a list of suggested preventative measures:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve or elbow, not your hands.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

Q: If you are sick with COVID-19 or suspect you are infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, what steps can I take to help prevent the disease from spreading to people in my home and community?

A: The following is a list of steps to prevent the disease spreading:

  • Stay home except to get medical care.
  • Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home.
    • As much as possible, you should stay in a specific room and away from other people in your home. Also, you should use a separate bathroom, if available.
    • Do not handle pets or other animals while sick.
  • Call ahead before visiting your doctor.
  • Wear a facemask.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes.
    • Throw used tissues in a lined trash can and immediately wash your hands.
  • Avoid sharing personal household items.
  • Clean your hands often.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Clean all “high-touch” surfaces every day.
  • Monitor your symptoms. Seek prompt medical attention if your illness is worsening (e.g. difficulty breathing).
  • Patients with confirmed COVID-19 should remain under home isolation precautions until the risk of secondary transmission to other is thought to be low.

For additional information about what to do if you are sick or suspected to be infected with coronavirus, please visit cdc.gov or call the New York State Coronavirus hotline at 1-888-364-3065 where callers can speak to an actual medical expert.

Sincerely,

Judi Bosworth
Supervisor
Town of North Hempstead
220 Plandome Road
Manhasset, NY 11030

 

 

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