Cory W. Berlekamp
Since the beginning of the new year, the world has been watching the evolving situation of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus and concerns have grown as the number of places and cases are growing day by day. Symptoms of the virus include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. The danger that also lies within the disease is that you also may not suffer any of these symptoms, yet still, have it.
According to the World Health Organization as of Feb. 4, there were 20,630 cases confirmed in 23 countries. Their risk assessment puts China on very high and the global level on high.
The situation is yet to reach its high-water mark but for some people at the University of Findlay, precautions are more than enough to put them at ease.
Shannon Hichlin, a second-year pharmacy student at UF, was calm when explaining her reason why she was not worried about the new strain of coronavirus.
“Coronavirus is way more common than people think, it’s just the strain that has come up now is more dangerous because we don’t have immunity to it,” said Hichlin. “I feel the best way to protect yourself from things like that is proper handwashing and cough into your elbow.”
Though the disease has reached the United States, Ohio still does not have any confirmed cases after the Ohio Department of Health confirmed that the two cases at Miami University came back negative.
Tara Smith, Director of Health Services at the Cosiano Health Center, also believes that the best thing one can do to protect themselves from any illness are the normal precautions you would take with the flu or cold.
“Ways to prevent any kind of illness is to make sure you are washing your hands for an adequate amount of time, cough into your elbow or cover your cough with a shirt or a Kleenex, make sure you use alcohol-based hand sanitizer and get plenty of rest and fluids.”
Smith explained that they have already received protocol from the CDC and that as of Feb. 4 that UF is not a high risk.
“If somebody feels that they have a suspected case, we would quarantine them and bring in the health department work works alongside the CDC,” Smith said. “The Ohio Department of Health has stressed to us that everyone should go about your business and make sure you are washing your hands often and covering your cough.”
Precautions can be taken from getting the Coronavirus, but some groups are more vulnerable.
“Someone who is immunocompromised, elderly, younger children; those are the people who are at a higher risk of any illness,” said Smith.
If any student or employee has any health concerns, Cosiano Health Center located at 120 W. Foulke Ave. is open daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and can be reached at 419-434-4550.