BARRON COUNTY -- While the risk to American's and area residents remains low, the Barron County Department of Health and Human Services has issued a news release sharing some tips on how community members can prepare should a large scale outbreak occur.
While the risk of getting Coronavirus remains low for American’s, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is telling Americans they should be prepared for the possibility of an outbreak in their community.
“Coronavirus is not spreading in the United States at this time, but it is always good to be prepared,” says Sarah Turner, Public Health Specialist with Barron County Department of Health and Human Services. “The risk of getting sick is still very low but there are some things you can do to be ready if it hits.”
Here are some things the Center for Global Health and Science say you can do to limit the spread of illness and be prepared should a large-scale outbreak happen.
- Practice social distancing. If you are sick, stay home. This will help stop the spread of illness to others. You may want to consider stocking up on extra medications and food so you won’t have to go out while sick. If you take daily medications, make sure you have enough to last a couple weeks. Have extra fever reducers like Tylenol and Ibuprofen on hand.Wipe down common surfaces in your home often. Most household cleaners and even soap and water should work.
- Make plans in case you do get sick. If you show early signs of illness, like a fever or a dry cough, call your doctor's office but don't head straight to the emergency room or urgent care, where you might infect others. However, if you are having trouble breathing or if you are dehydrated, make sure to go in right away.
- Make plans for kids. Figure out now what you would do if daycare centers or schools start closing because of an outbreak. Do you have a backup childcare plan in place?
- Make arrangements at work as well. Consider your ability to work from home if the virus is spreading locally. Obviously, if you are sick, you should stay home. But even if you are well, telecommuting makes sense in the event of a local outbreak to reduce the chances that you'll be infected.
- Practice good health habits at home. Wash your hands as soon as you walk through the door. Washing your hands often is one of the best ways to protect yourself against infection from Coronavirus, or the cold or flu. Make sure to scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds and avoid touching your face, eyes and nose. Consider using alcohol-based hand sanitizers when soap and water are not readily available. If someone in your home gets sick, try to limit the person to one room. Make sure to wash your hands as soon as you leave the room or care for them.
- As always, cover your cough. Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If a tissue is not available, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve or elbow area. Be sure to wash your hands after coughing or sneezing.
“Doing all of these things will help to keep you healthy and stop the spread of illness to others, Turner concludes. Most importantly, stay home when you are sick and wash your hands often.”
To learn more about Coronavirus visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.