COOL TIP: What To Do If You Think You Have The Coronavirus

If you are sick with COVID-19 or suspect you are infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, follow the steps below to help prevent the disease from spreading to people in your home and community.   This information comes directly from the Center for Disease Control.

Call your doctor:  If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever1 and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider immediately.   It is important that you call the healthcare provider and tell them that you have or may have COVID-19. This will help the healthcare provider’s office take steps to keep other people from getting infected or exposed.

Monitor your symptoms:  Seek prompt medical attention if your illness is worsening (e.g., difficulty breathing).   If necessary, call the nearest hospital emergency room and alert them to your concerns. Put on a facemask before you enter any medical facility. This will keep other people in the office or waiting room from getting infected or exposed. Ask your healthcare provider to call the local or state health department. Persons who are placed under active monitoring or facilitated self-monitoring should follow instructions provided by their local health department or occupational health professionals, as appropriate.
Stay home except to get medical care: People who are mildly ill with COVID-19 are able to isolate at home during their illness. You should restrict activities outside your home, except for getting medical care. Do not go to work, school, or public areas. Avoid using public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis.
Wear a facemask if you are sick:  You should wear a facemask when you are around other people (e.g., sharing a room or vehicle) or pets and before you enter a healthcare provider’s office. If the person who is sick is not able to wear a facemask (for example, because it causes trouble breathing), then people who live with the person who is sick should not stay in the same room with them, or they should wear a facemask if they enter a room with the person who is sick.
Cover your coughs and sneezes: Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw used tissues in a lined trash can. Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or, if soap and water are not available, clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.  Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands if you are around someone who might be sick.
Avoid sharing personal household items:   You should not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, or bedding with other people or pets in your home. After using these items, they should be washed thoroughly with soap and water.  Also, clean any surfaces that may have blood, stool, or body fluids on them with a household cleaning spray or wipe.
When Will This Contagion End?

According to the brilliant doctor Larry Brilliant,  three things must happen before we are “out of the woods”.

  1. Through significantly more testing, we can figure out whether the distribution of this virus looks like an iceberg, which is one-seventh above the water, or a pyramid, where we see everything.
  2. Scientists can create and widely distribute both an anti-viral treatment as well as a vaccine.
  3. We begin to see large numbers of people—in particular nurses, home health care providers, doctors, policemen, firemen, and teachers who have had the disease—are immune, and we have tested them to know that they are not infectious any longer.

The bad news is that we are probably a year or 18 months from those three objectives.  So strap yourself in for a wild ride in 2020.

Additional Financial Assistance

There are a number of other private, local philanthropic and governmental assistance programs available to people affected by the virus-fueled recession.   You should check out this page to get your started finding additional help.

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