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Illnesses Can Spread Quickly

On Thursday the Center for Disease and Control issued a new warning about the coronavirus. Right now there are no reports of the virus in the U.S., but experts are watching it closely. So far, the only reports have come from the Middle East. The SARS epidemic in 2003 was a form of the coronavirus that did not spread worldwide like officials feared. Past epidemics and the mystery illness at the Truman Hotel in Jefferson City last week are good learning tools on how to avoid spreading illness. Today the coronavirus has not made its way to the United States. A total of 17 cases have been reported in the Middle East and one in England. Only the sickest of patients have been studied, so doctors are trying to determine how severe the virus can get. Dr. Michael Cooperstock, an infectious disease specialist in Columbia, says America could become infected depending on how public health authorities in the Middle East respond. Dr. Cooperstock says the CDC warned all doctors about the virus and its symptoms. “The CDC has put out an alert that we’ve all received that basically says if a patient with a severe respiratory disease, probably pneumonia, has to be put in the ICU, make sure you get a history, travel history, and if they’ve recently arrived from the Middle East, get them studied.”Health experts are working on keeping the virus at bay. The illness that made the coroners sick in Jefferson City is a perfect example on how to avoid spreading viruses. The convention held dozens of people together in small rooms for two days. “They are sitting across the table, they are talking maybe coughing, passing papers back and fourth. How easy would it be to transmit under those conditions,” Dr. Cooperstock says. The Missouri State Health Department positively identified three different people with the same strain of influenza A. This event in Jefferson City highlights what medical professionals have been trying to get people aware of – a simple matter of spreading a bad virus around. . Dr. Cooperstock says people shouldn’t worry but be aware. To prevent the spread of germs, you should stay at home if you are sick, cover your cough and sneeze into your sleeve and wash your hands frequently.

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