Stop the Panic: 6 Coronavirus Facts to Help You Stay Sane

This article was republished with permission from SCRUBS Magazine.

Medical professional studying the Coronavirus

Public health officials are urging healthcare providers and the general public not to panic over the coronavirus. Those at risk of getting infected and healthcare workers will need access to facemasks, hand sanitizer, and other supplies, so don’t start stocking up unless you really need them. Panicking will only make matters worse.

In a recent poll, over 20,000 medical professionals were asked, ‘Are you concerned?’ The results are staggering. A majority 91% of Nurses and medical professionals are urging the public to stay calm and not change their life, citing human behavior being the problem.

The comments from our medical community:

Destiny commented:
It is something to be aware of so we can make smart decisions, but definitely not something to panic over. Wash your hands, don’t go out if you’re sick unless you have to. Stop stealing hospital and clinic supplies!

Nicole mentioned:
Scary that 1) people are becoming increasingly racist and xenophobic 2) people are stock piling resources like masks that may be causing shortages for healthcare facilities. I have even heard of thefts of masks like N95s prompting removal of masks from general areas.

Charlene:
The virus isn’t scary, the potential to have to shut down everything because we all have to stay at home because we have caught it is scary.

Miranda:
I mean…. I’ve never seen people wearing hazmat suits,forcing entire cruise ships into quarantine and threatening to cull pets over the flu. 🤷‍♀️🤷‍♀️🤷‍♀️ So it’s a little scary!!

That’s why it’s important to get information from reliable sources, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization, so you don’t spread false facts and information that could lead to unnecessary panic.

Keep these facts in mind to stay calm:

Who’s at Risk?

  • Asian Americans are just as likely to get the virus as Caucasian Americans. Don’t assume individuals have the virus based on their ethnicity.
  • The threat to the American population remains relatively low. Only those that may have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19, those that have recently traveled to infected areas, and those with respiratory symptoms and underlying health conditions should get tested. If you have flu-like symptoms and meet the criteria mentioned above, contact your local or state health department.

What Is It Like to Get the Virus?

  • The vast majority of cases are mild. A recent study from China shows 80% of confirmed cases had fairly mild symptoms, with no significant infection in the lungs.
  • About 15% had severe symptoms that caused significant shortness of breath, low blood oxygen or other lung problems, and fewer than 5% of cases were critical, featuring respiratory failure, septic shock, or multiple organ problems.
  • The virus poses a greater risk to older individuals and those with preexisting conditions.
  • According to the CDC, the likelihood is that 80% of those that get the virus won’t even know it, and it will pass through their system. You may experience something akin to flu. Treat it as such.

Is It Fatal?

  • The mortality rate for the virus remains low. Anywhere between 1 and 3.4% of confirmed cases have been considered fatal. So far, most of those who have died have been elderly, including several patients from a nursing home just outside of Seattle, WA.
  • Even elderly individuals have around a 90% survival rate. If you have the virus or think you may have been infected, chances are you won’t die.

How Could I Get It?

  • Thus far, most infections have occurred in close quarters, usually inside the home. If you share a living space with someone who may have the virus, you may be infected as well.
  • You can get it the same way you’ll catch any other virus.

Can I Get It from Doorknobs and Handrails?

  • Yes, the virus seems to linger on hard surfaces for around 72 hours. Wash your hands often, use hand sanitizer or wear gloves when taking public transportation to avoid contamination. Avoid touching your face, eyes, and mouth after being out in public.

What Happens Next?

  • The Global-scale panic that the media has caused on this virus is off the charts. Stocks are down, businesses are slow and shelves are empty.
  • Unless you have strong evidence to suggest you may be infected, freaking out over the coronavirus will only make matters worse.
  • Avoid sharing false information and look for updates from reliable sources.
  • A Global panic of this scale has the opportunity to shut down markets, destroy businesses and create a recession. Don’t fuel the flames. If you’re not sick, live life normally. Go to work, go to the store, support your local business.

Older individuals and those with preexisting conditions should monitor their health closely and seek medical assistance if they think they have the virus. However, if you’re healthy, you haven’t been in close contact with someone that’s been infected, and you haven’t traveled to an infected area, there’s no reason to worry.

 

Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

 

Sources: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/06/coronavirus-facts-what-is-the-mortality-rate-and-is-there-a-cure-covid-19
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/share-facts.html
https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus


This article was republished with permission from SCRUBS Magazine.
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Angela Teasley

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