COVID-19 is a global pandemic that has shaken people across the world. After originating in Wuhan, China, the virus has rapidly spread around the globe. International travelers carried COVID-19 to their home countries, despite airport screenings and travel restrictions. Now that the virus is in America people are wondering, what states are at risk?
If you’re looking for more resources please consult the CDC for information about COVID-19 prevention, news updates, and how to stay safe during this time.
Where has COVID-10 Spread?
Coronavirus has been confirmed in 46 states and the Dominican Republic. The first cases were linked directly to international travels, but now person to person cases have begun to pop up. Some COVID-19 cases have even been diagnosed when there is no known contact with another infected individual, which makes this virus truly a widespread threat. The coronavirus is here and in almost every state, so it’s safe to say that everyone is at a potential risk.
Who’s at the Highest Risk?
Certain people are at a higher risk of contracting Covid-19 and suffering more severe symptoms. The groups at the highest risk include:
- Immunocompromised people
- People suffering from underlying medical conditions – diabetes, cancer, heart disease, lung disease, etc.
Anybody can catch the coronavirus, even if they aren’t considered high risk. Young, healthy people may carry the virus without knowing and spread it to people in at-risk groups.
What You Can Do
Since the coronavirus is spreading across the nation, what can you do? At this point the biggest focus is on slowing the spread of the virus so our healthcare system is able to keep up and offer treatment to those who need it. You can help prevent the spread by:
- Covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze
- Practice social distancing – avoid close contact with others, especially in large groups
- Wash your hands regularly and thoroughly
- Avoid touching your face
- If there’s a chance you’ve been exposed to COVID-19, self-quarantine for 14 days
- Remain calm – creating mass panic leads more people to hoard food, supplies, and medication they may not need. We’re equipped to handle the virus, but only if everyone remains calm.
If you believe you have coronavirus, do not go to the ER or urgent care. Test kits aren’t readily available and visiting the ER or urgent care just exposes other patients and healthcare workers to the possibility of the virus.
Stay home, call your primary care provider or health department, and avoid contact with people until you’ve been advised otherwise. Seek medical attention if you have difficulty breathing or a high fever that won’t break with over the counter medications.