Useful information from the New York State Departments of Health and Education on the coronavirus

information iconIn  early February, the district posted information on this website at the request of the New York State Departments of Health and Education  regarding  the 2019 Novel (new) Coronavirus (2019-nCoV). 

Because media coverage continues, the district is reposting the information in the interest of keeping our school district community informed about the facts on the virus.    Please know that, as always, the health and safety of our students and staff is our highest priority.

A message from Superintendent Brian Monahan regarding the district’s coronavirus preparedness  

Talking to Children About COVID-19 (Coronavirus): A Parent Resource

 

A new coronavirus called 2019 Novel (new) Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) was first found in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. This virus had not been found in humans before. This coronavirus can lead to fever, cough and trouble breathing or shortness of breath. There are thousands of diagnosed cases in China and new cases being diagnosed in a number of countries including the United States.

What do we know?

Since this virus is very new, health authorities continue to carefully watch how this virus spreads. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is working hard to learn as much as possible about this new virus, so that we can better understand how it spreads and causes illness. The CDC considers this virus to be a serious public health concern. Based on current information the CDC recommends avoiding travel to China. Updated travel information related to 2019‐nCoV can be found at

https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/warning/novel-coronavirus-china

How does 2019 Novel (New) Coronavirus spread?

Health experts believe the virus probably spreads from animals to humans and from person to person. It’s not clear yet how easily the virus spreads from person-to-person. The 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCov) is not currently a concern for the general public and is not actively circulating among New Yorkers at this time. Therefore, there is no need to cancel school or social events, and there is no need for students or school staff to wear surgical masks at school.

Prevention

There are currently no vaccines available to protect against this virus. The New York State Department of Health (DOH) recommends the following ways to minimize the spread of all respiratory viruses, including 2019-nCoV:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  •  Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  •  Stay home when you are sick. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing. If you use a tissue, throw it in the trash.
  • Routinely clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  •  CDC recommends that travelers avoid all travel to China.

Symptoms

Information to date suggests that 2019-nCoV causes mild-to-moderate illness and symptoms like the flu, including fever, cough, and difficulty breathing

Important health information for those who have recently traveled to Wuhan, Hubei Province, China or other international locations where the virus has become an issue and experience symptoms

If you recently traveled to Wuhan, China or other international locations where the virus is an issue and feel sick with fever, cough or trouble breathing; OR you develop symptoms within 14 days of traveling there, you should:

  • Seek medical care right away. Call ahead and tell them about your travel and symptoms.
  • Avoid contact with others. 
  • Stay home, except for seeking medical care.  
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
  •  Wash hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent  alcohol. 
  •  Contact your local health department.

For questions please contact the Orange County Department of Health or the NYS DOH Novel Coronavirus hotline at 1-888-364-3065.

We encourage you to keep up to date about 2019-nCoV, its treatment and prevention by visiting the following websites:

Additional Resources

CDC’s dedicated 2019-nCoV website at https://www.cdc.gov/nCoV

NYSDOH’s dedicated 2019-nCoV website at https://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/communicable/coronavirus/

Orange County Department of Health

New York State Center for School Health website at www.schoolhealthny.com