Coronavirus threat low for Central Illinois, President Trump to speak on US response

Health News

PEORIA COUNTY, Ill. (WMBD)– The Center For Disease Control and Prevention now says public health officials in the US should be prepared for a pandemic.

There are now more than 80,000 cases of the Coronavirus with 53 cases in the United States. CDC’s deputy director Anne Schuchat says the virus is contained in the nation, but things could change.

“As we see an outbreak in Italy, Iran, South Korea, we really need to be prepared in case things change here,” said Schuchat. “So we really want to get the message out to people, to partners, that things could change.”

Wednesday, President Trump is expected to address the country on the US response to the Coronavirus.

The Peoria County Health Department is working hand in hand with other local organizations to educate the community on the Coronavirus.

Much like the flu, it’s spread all over because it’s an airborne virus meaning it’s highly contagious. It’s a respiratory virus with symptoms ranging from severe to mild fever, cough, or shortness of breath.

While health officials say the threat locally is low, education efforts are still underway. It’s a way for public health officials to put the public’s mind at ease.

This particular strain COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus, meaning it’s a strain that we’d not seen in the past. SARS, MURS thos are also coronaviruses. So when you see a new virus, that’s when it can be highly contagious because it’s something that no one’s immune system has seen before. The fear partly stems from the fact that it is new, that it’s a new virus, that it is highly contagious. We’ve been working with our local health care system and community partners to ensure that all of our policies and procedures are sufficient to meet the demands of this virus so that we’re well prepared to address it if we do acquire any cases here in Central Illinois.

Katy Endress, Director of Epidemiology and Clinical Services | Peoria County Health Department

Prevention efforts are by properly washing your hands. Avoid contact with sick people or those who have traveled to high-risk areas, and covering coughs with a tissue or sleeve.

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