The following information was released by the city of North Myrtle Beach.
The city of North Myrtle Beach received some phone calls and emails asking about coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and how to avoid contracting it. Here is some basic information:
Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure. The most common symptoms are fever, cough and shortness of breath. Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed COVID-19 cases. Existing underlying heart, respiratory or other medical conditions, coupled with older age, may play a significant role in cases where people have died from COVID-19.
IT HELPS TO KEEP THINGS IN PERSPECTIVE
It is important to keep things in perspective. Millions of Americans come down with the flu each year, and tens of thousands of Americans die from the flu each year. Also, the flu virus is not always the same from year to year. It can and does mutate into different strains, catching the world by surprise, at which point new vaccines are developed to deal with the changes. As things currently stand, the impact COVID-19 is having on the United States is light years away from the flu’s impact.
Currently, there is no vaccine to prevent COVID-19, although an all-out effort is underway to develop one. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid exposure to this or any other virus.
The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:
Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
Stay home when you are sick.
Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds (Sing the song “Happy Birthday” twice), especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
These are everyday habits that can help prevent the spread of several viruses. CDC does have specific guidance for travelers. Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask. CDC does NOT recommend people who are well wearing a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19. Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of the virus to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers, people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a health care facility) or people responding to an emergency call pertaining to COVD-19 or other virus condition.
At this time, there is no specific antiviral treatment recommended for coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19). People who think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider immediately.
VISIT THESE WEBSITES FOR MORE INFORMATION
CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION: www.cdc.gov