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Coronavirus: How Can I Protect Myself and My Family?

Posted by Brianna Maguire on Feb 12th 2020

As of January 23, there have been 557 confirmed cases of a new Coronavirus originating in Wuhan, China, and 17 reported deaths.

Right now, there probably isn’t much to worry about if you’re in the United States. But if you’re traveling in China - or just want to be extra careful - there are some ways you can protect yourself.

Fast Facts about Coronavirus:

  • Coronaviruses are “zoonotic,” meaning that it’s transmitted between animals and people - there are many different coronaviruses
  • The coronavirus detected in Wuhan, China is a new strain that is thought to have originated in a seafood market, though the virus is still under investigation
  • The World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed that there is some human-to-human transmission
  • Common symptoms include fever, cough, breathing difficulties, and other respiratory symptoms
  • In severe cases, it’s known to cause pneumonia, kidney failure, and in rare cases, death
  • Coronavirus is especially dangerous for those with weakened immune systems

How to Protect Yourself

If you’re travelling in or around China, you may want to take some precautions.

Avoid contact with those that have respiratory illness, like those that are coughing or sneezing

If you noticed the people around you seem sick - if they’re coughing, sneezing, or feel ill - you may want to keep your distance. While it’s highly unlikely that they’ve contracted the virus, avoiding those that are sick can keep you safe from all types of diseases, like the common flu.

Wear respiratory masks

Respiratory masks like the one below can reduce the risk of contracting illness. Protect yourself by wearing a mask when you’re out in public spaces, especially where others could be ill. If you are starting to feel ill, wearing a mask can help protect the people around you. Shop our masks here.

If you have a weakened immune system, avoid live animal markets and raw meat

For those that have underlying conditions or weakened immune systems, like those undergoing cancer treatments, it’s best to avoid contact with live animals and raw meat. Compromised immune systems will be more susceptible to severe cases.

Wash hands regularly and keep hand sanitizer around you

Make sure hands are clean before you eat, after you use the restroom, and before you touch your eyes, nose, or mouth. Regularly disinfecting your hands can significantly decrease your risk of becoming sick.

Stock up on hand sanitizer to keep at your desk, throughout your house, or anywhere else! Hand sanitizer makes it easy to stay clean, without having to run to the restroom. Plus, this McKesson Hand Sanitizer with Aloe kills more than 99% of most bacteria.

And remember - there’s most likely no reason to worry right now. There has only been one reported case in the United States so far, and the WHO has decided not to declare a global health emergency.

For the most accurate information on Coronavirus, visit the World Health Organization.

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