COVID-19 and Community Spread
Public health experts have estimated up to 1% of the population could be infected after identifying multiple cases of community spread of coronavirus.
The estimates consider that:
- Testing is limited.
- Most individuals that have the disease are asymptomatic or have mild symptoms.
- The incubation period can be up to 14 days so people are incubating the illness and aren’t showing symptoms.
- We know that this virus is highly transmissible.
Based on how quickly the virus multiplies and infects people and based on the modeling, we can extrapolate that there are thousands of Ohioans who may already have been infected.
We know that sounds extremely scary but please consider:
- The majority of people who have this illness will experience mild or moderate symptoms. They won’t require testing. And they will be prescribed treatment to help ease their symptoms. For fever, we will give Tylenol or acetaminophen. For coughs, they likely will take cough medicine and cough drops.
A smaller number of cases will have severe infections that will require hospitalization. That’s why individuals need to be vigilant in monitoring symptoms and reach out to a healthcare provider if symptoms worsen. Individuals with shortness of breath or a high fever should see a provider.
That healthcare provider will use clinical judgment combined with a medical evaluation and history to decide if testing is necessary. Testing requires a doctor’s order.
Not everyone needs to be tested.
As part of efforts to stem the spread of the virus, the state of Ohio has implemented multiple preventive measures including: Closing schools, limiting mass gatherings, encouraging proper cleaning and handwashing, etc. to help reduce the impact of coronavirus. These measures will slow the spread of the virus and will reduce the impact on our healthcare system.
- Stay home when you are sick
- Avoid contact with people who are sick
- Get adequate sleep and eat well-balanced meals
- Wash hands often with water and soap (20 seconds or longer)
- Dry hands with a clean towel or air dry your hands
- Cover your mouth with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, mouth with unwashed hands or after touching surfaces
- Clean and disinfect "High-Touch" surfaces often
- Call before visiting your doctor
- Practice good hygiene habits
For answers to your COVID-19 questions, call 1-833-4ASKODH (1-833-427-5634).