Elderly Americans aged 60 and up and adults with underlying health conditions should stock up on food and medicine and prepare to stay home to avoid getting seriously ill from the coronavirus outbreak, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. On Monday, Dr. Nancy Messonnier, the director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases at the CDC, shared that novel coronavirus preparation is crucial, especially for those who are at risk.
"It's fair to say that as the trajectory of the outbreak continues, many people in the United States will at some point in time, either this year or next, be exposed to this virus, and there's a good chance many will become sick," she shared, noting that "Our goal is to protect you. This will require you and your family to take action."
People at Serious Risk for Coronavirus
Studying the early information of COVID-19 out of China, public health officials have noted that older adults and people who have conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and lung disease are at high-risk and should partake in social distancing to prevent the spread of coronavirus cases.
How to Prepare for Coronavirus
If you are at high-risk, now is the time to stock up on essentials and medications. Taking action means, "you have supplies on hand like routine medications for blood pressure and diabetes, and over-the-counter medicines and medical supplies to treat fever and other symptoms." Younger family members are being asked to check up on their older relatives and help provide them with necessary supplies.
Symptoms of Coronavirus
Coronavirus spreads fast, so if you believe you have it, stay home and call your healthcare provider. Symptoms include dry coughing, shortness of breath, and fever. Since it shares a lot of similarities with pneumonia, influenza and the common cold, only a diagnostic test can tell health care workers if you have COVIS-19.
Health experts share the virus is shared through respiratory droplets released in the air when a sick person sneezes or coughs. Because of this people should stay away from crowds and infected individuals. If you find yourself within close contact of individuals, handwashing or the use of hand sanitizer can help prevent the spread.
Should I Travel?
Earlier this week the federal government recommended individuals with underlying health issues should not take cruises or take plane trips if it is not-essential. Currently, 700 cases have been found on cruise ships.
What to Stock Up On For Coronavirus Preparation
The US Department of Homeland Security recommends stocking up enough food and water for 2 weeks before a pandemic strikes. While the World Health Organization has not categorized the coronavirus as a pandemic yet, it's a good idea to be prepared.
Canned food, rice, pasta, beans, and oats should be the foundation of your stockpile as well as household disinfectant and hygiene items such as toilet paper and feminine-care products. You only need a 2-week supply, so buy only what you need. There's no need to grab every roll of toilet paper on the shelf.