As concerns about the coronavirus (COVID-19) continue to grow, Southern Ohio Medical Center is asking the community to help prevent the spread of the virus through simple and familiar techniques.
“For many people, the coronavirus is unfamiliar – but the best way to protect yourself is very familiar: Cover your cough, and wash your hands regularly,” Dr. David Byers, the Senior Medical Director of Infectious Disease at SOMC, said. “We want to remind the public that, as of now, there are no confirmed cases of the coronavirus in our community. We ask those who are concerned not to panic, but rather to take simple steps to make sure they are avoiding unnecessary exposure to germs.”
“SOMC has prepared for the possibility of receiving patients with COVID-19. Our first priority is, and always will be, the wellbeing of our patients, staff and community,” SOMC President and CEO Ben Gill said. “Anytime there is the potential that the health of our community could be impacted, SOMC and the local health departments monitor it closely. Our entire team has been stepping up and preparing for weeks, and we are ready to do whatever is necessary to help guide our community through this situation.”
The novel coronavirus is characterized by respiratory illness with fever, cough and difficulty breathing. Symptoms have ranged from mild to severe. There is currently no vaccine or treatment, so the CDC has recommended patients be isolated either in a hospital – if they need a higher level of care – or at home until they recover and no longer pose a risk of infecting others.
For those who are experiencing symptoms related to COVID-19 and believe they need medical attention, it is recommended that they call their primary care provider to make arrangements before coming in to seek treatment.
“It’s important that the public not overreact, but just to keep in mind that they need to be following standard techniques to help prevent the spread of illness,” Dr. Byers said.
For the latest information about the COVID-19, regularly visit cdc.gov. For additional resources, visit somc.org/COVID-19.