A Column by Assemblyman Brian M. Kolb (R,C-Canandaigua)
ALBANY, NY — March 14, 2020 — During an outbreak of a disease like coronavirus, it can be difficult to keep things in perspective. That’s especially true in the age of social media, when everyone has a platform and everyone has an opinion. Here are some tips on how the experts believe we should move forward.
In the coming days, you’re going to see an increase in confirmed cases in New York state and across the country. This is not a cause for panic. Rather, it’s a sign that more test kits are being made available and that individuals who are either displaying symptoms or have come into contact with an infected person are doing the right thing.
Follow Guidelines From Experts
At both the federal and state levels, leaders like President Trump, Vice President Pence and Gov. Cuomo are listening to top healthcare experts when they’re crafting government response. Measures like limiting international travel, canceling large gatherings and transferring college classes online might seem extreme, but they represent some of our most effective methods to limit the spread.
Experts have also been clear about steps individuals can take to reduce the spread of the virus. Wash your hands. Avoid touching your face. Practice social distancing- staying six feet away from others as much as possible, particularly in public. Don’t attend work or other social events if you feel ill. Call ahead before visiting your doctor to receive information about proper protocols. If you have been placed under quarantine by medical professionals, follow their instructions precisely.
It’s not just about you.
One piece of heartening information is that people who are generally healthy, particularly young people, have an extremely low fatality risk. That’s not, however, license to ignore directives from experts on how to stem the transmission of the virus. While an otherwise healthy 20-year old may never develop any symptoms, they can still transmit the virus to a roommate with a deficient immune system, or an elderly neighbor with preexisting respiratory issues.
The bottom line: if you don’t get infected, you won’t spread the virus. If you don’t spread the virus, we’ll put less stress on our healthcare infrastructure and put fewer of our amazing healthcare workers on the front lines of this epidemic at risk.
Don’t panic. Be smart. We’re going to get through this.
SOURCE: Daniel LaFave | Communications | NYS Assemblyman Brian M. Kolb