Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by the recently discovered coronavirus. Those infected by this disease can experience mild to moderate respiratory illness. Older adults, or those with preexisting conditions, like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, or cancer are more likely to experience more severe symptoms.
People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
Fever or chills
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Muscle or body aches
New loss of taste or smell
Congestion or runny nose
Nausea or vomiting
Click here to see the difference between Covid-19 and Influenza (the flu).
Important ways to slow the spread of Covid-19
· Wear a mask, over your nose and mouth, to protect yourself and others.
· Stay at least six feet from others.
· Avoid crowds.
· Wash your hands often.
· Clean and disinfect.
· Monitor your health daily.
What’s the difference between physical distancing, isolation, and quarantine?
What is Physical Distancing?
Social distancing should be practiced by everyone, whether exposed to the virus or not. This set of measures includes avoiding handshakes, crowds, and staying six feet away from people, and most importantly, staying home if you feel sick.
What is Isolation?
A diagnosis of Covid-19 triggers isolation. Isolation is for those who are already sick and serves to keep the infected away from healthy people in order to stop the spread of the virus.
Duration: For most persons with COVID-19 illness, isolation and precautions can generally be discontinued 10 days after symptom onset and resolution of fever for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing medications, and with improvement of other symptoms.
A limited number of persons with severe illness may produce replication-competent virus beyond 10 days that may warrant extending duration of isolation and precautions for up to 20 days after symptom onset; consider consultation with infection control experts.
What is Quarantine?
Quarantine is used to keep someone who might have been exposed to COVID-19 away from others. Quarantine helps prevent spread of disease that can occur before a person knows they are sick or if they are infected with the virus without feeling symptoms. People in quarantine should stay home, separate themselves from others, monitor their health, and follow directions from their state or local health department.
Duration: CDC continues to endorse quarantine for 14 days and recognizes that any quarantine shorter than 14 days balances reduced burden against a small possibility of spreading the virus.
In December of 2020, both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines started to be rolled out. The FDA has approved Emergency Use Authorizations for both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. The federal government will be providing a limited amount of vaccines in 2020, with supplies increasing substantially in 2021. As a result, some groups may be recommended for vaccination first: healthcare, long-term care staff and residents, essential workers, high-risk residents and patients 65 and up.
Covid-19 vaccine availability is determined by a phase guide. Phase 1A will provide the vaccine to long-term care facility residents and staff as well as healthcare workers who are dealing directly with patients. Phase 1B will give the vaccine to high risk individual and those over 65 years of age, first responders, and essential workers. Phase 2 will include populations at increased risk (prisoners, homeless, etc.) and Phase 3 will be for all Missouri residents.
Common myths about the vaccine:
Is this a hoax? No! Covid-19 is not a hoax, and neither is this vaccine. It is recommended by medical professionals that you consider getting the vaccine.
Can I get Covid-19 from the vaccine? No, you cannot get Covid-19 from this vaccine.
If I’ve already gotten Covid-19, should I still get vaccinated? Yes. There has been evidence of reinfection, so you should still consider getting vaccinated.
For more information, feel free to contact the Mississippi County Health Department at 573-683-2191