Two Pennsylvania residents have tested positive for COVID-19 as of this morning, but what does this mean for Pennsylvania residents?
First of all, the CDC, WHO, and hundreds of health officials are working tirelessly to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The intent of this article is to prepare Pennsylvania residents for the expected changes to daily life while officials work to prevent the spread of the virus. While the chances of contracting or dying from the virus are still very low for PA residents, odds are very high that our daily life will be significantly impacted.
Last month, the CDC urged US residents to prepare for schools to be closed, to be out of work for weeks, and to stock up on supplies. To date, over 160 US schools have been closed due to the Coronavirus, thousands are currently quarantined in the US, and two states have declared a State of Emergency.
Nearly 300 million students globally are unable to attend school in over 20 countries with the UN stating “the global scale and speed of the current educational disruption is unparalleled.”.
In the US alone, over 160 schools have been closed.
Los Angeles declared a state of emergency on Wednesday, advising parents to prepare for school closures in the nation’s second-largest public school district. Washington State.
In nearby New York, multiple school districts have already been closed.
In New York alone, more than 2,500 people were told to self-quarantine while 22 have tested positive and are in isolation.
In California, more than 9,700 people were told to stay at home and monitor their health. Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency earlier this week after California saw its first virus-related death.
Individuals under self-quarantine can't go to "work, school or any other public places where they could have contact with others," for two weeks according to Seattle & King County's department of public health in Washington state.
Wuhan China with a population of 11 million has been quarantined for over 40 days. The video below shows what the quarantine is like with thousands screaming in the night, assumably from cabin fever:
The CDC recommends having enough prescription medication, food, water, and general supplies to last two weeks. In Wuhan China however, millions of residents have been quarantined for over 40 days and continue to be quarantined. Additionally, residents should have over the counter medicine such as pain relievers, mucus relief, and cold/cough medicine. Officials recommend also buying foods that you would eat if you were sick.
As more and more cases arise in the US, supplies are already on back order online including sanitizing wipes, rubbing alcohol, and toilet paper.
In Australia, a national shortage of toilet paper has been going on for days with newspapers printing blank pages for readers to use for toilet paper. Stocking issues have already struck the US. Some items are already being limited per customer. View below:
Aside from the great toilet paper shortage of 2020, the UK is reporting mass shortages of canned foods, pasta, OTC medication, hand sanitizer, and toilet paper.
The shortages of items is expected to worsen for the US as manufacturing in China has slowed drastically. Footage leaked from US ports show a severe lack of imports which can be expected to impact US store shelves shortly. The video below was taken by a truck driver in a US port:
How Probable Are These Concerns?
The Novel Coronavirus is a new form of the Coronavirus. While death tolls are climbing, the virus itself only has an estimated mortality rate of around 2.4% (primarily affecting those with preexisting conditions and the elderly) in comparison with the flu which has a mortality rate of 0.1%. Health officials are primarily concerned with stopping the transmission of he virus while it is in it's infancy before it as able to spread globally like the common flu.
The flu took 14,000 lives in the US alone in 2019, a fairly low number. If COVID-19 were to spread as widely as the flu, we could expect over 300,000 deaths annually from the Coronavirus. This is why health officials, local governments, the CDC, and WHO are willing to close schools, quarantine people who could have been exposed, and isolate confirmed cases. The intention is to prevent the addition of a Coronavirus season alongside the flu season.
Officials remain hopeful that it is still possible to prevent the virus from spreading to a point where it can no longer be controlled.
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