How to prepare for the coronavirus
Infectious disease experts emphasized that people should not panic and offered practical advice.
“The mantra is:” Stay calm and continue, “said Dr. Marguerite Neill, an infectious disease expert at Brown University.
And use common sense, experts said.
“If you see someone on a bus that is coughing, get away,” said Dr. Stanley Perlman, an infectious disease and coronavirus expert at the University of Iowa.
Stay home from work if you are sick.
Wash your hands often, said Dr. Trish Perl, an infectious disease specialist at UT Southwestern Medical Center. “It’s not super sexy but it works,” he said. With SARS, also a coronavirus, but one that is much more deadly, handwashing reduced the risk of transmission by 30-50%, he said.
Of course, you should cough at the elbow and discard the tissues in the bin after blowing your nose. You should keep your home surfaces clean. Alcohol is a good disinfectant for coronaviruses, Perl added.
It would be sensible to have a good supply of basic foods and necessary medications.
“Don’t wait until the last minute to refill your recipes,” Neill said. “You want to comfortably have a supply of at least 30 days.”
With household items, he said, make sure you have essential items at hand, such as laundry detergent and, if you have small children, diapers, maybe enough for a month.
He also suggested finding the website of your local health department so that you have a reliable source of news.
Infectious disease specialists strongly recommended influenza vaccines and, for older people, the pneumococcal pneumonia vaccine, although, they added, neither influenza nor bacterial pneumonia seems to affect a person’s risk of contracting a coronavirus infection. or get seriously ill. But it is possible that the coronavirus, by damaging the lung cells, can facilitate pneumonia control, Perl said. Avoiding the flu also means that you will not use the resources of a hospital and the time of health workers in case of an outbreak of coronavirus.
Parents may want to contact their children’s school system and find out how plans for early dismissals or online instruction would be implemented, if necessary.
And people with parents or elderly relatives should plan a support system in case they fall ill.