The Millburn Health Department, NJ Department of Health and the CDC have shared the following information on the recent reported outbreak of Coronavirus:
Novel Coronavirus is a virus strain that began to spread in December 2019. Health experts are concerned because little is known about this new virus and it has the potential to cause severe illness.
Coronavirus may spread from an infected person to others through:
- The air by coughing and sneezing
- Close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands
- Touching and object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose or eyes
- In rare cases, contact with feces
People infected have had illness that has ranged from mild (like a common cold) to severe pneumonia that requires medical care in a hospital. So far, deaths have been reported mainly in older adults who had other health conditions.
People who have been diagnosed with novel coronavirus have symptoms that may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after exposure to the virus. Symptoms may include fever, cough and shortness of breath.
There is widespread outbreak in Wuhan, China. At this time, the risk in the U.S. to the general public is low and there is only a small number of cases in the U.S. To limit the risk of spread, health officials are working with healthcare providers to promptly identify and evaluate anyone they think may have the virus.
Travelers to and from certain areas of the world may be at increased risk. See wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel for the latest travel guidance from the CDC.
Steps you can take to prevent spread of flu and the common cold will also help prevent coronavirus:
- Wash hands often with soap and water. If not available, use hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home while you are and avoid contact with others.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
Currently there are no vaccines to prevent novel coronavirus infections. Most people with mild coronavirus illness will recover on their own by drinking plenty of fluids, resting and taking pain and fever medications. However, some people may develop pneumonia and need medical treatment in a hospital setting.
Access more information on novel coronavirus on the CDC website and in the following information sheet from NJDOH (PDF).
For questions about the novel coronavirus you may contact the 24 hour public hotline number at 1-800-222-1222. All calls are free and answered by trained healthcare professionals.