Keep your distance! | Daily News


Keep your distance!

Social distancing key to containing COVID-19

‘If you take the COVID-19 or the Corona Virus disease, 80 percent of people recover without complication and the mortality rate is high for only 3 percent’ says Director Quarantine, Dr.S.M. Arnold. However, if you have symptoms seek medical care. You are not invincible and the COVID-19 Corona Virus is not a respecter of persons. Do not in anyway, take your chances with this disease.

Social distancing is important because Corona Virus spreads when an infected person coughs small droplets packed with the virus into the air. These can be breathed in, or can cause an infection if you touch a surface they have landed on, and then touch your face with unwashed hands. The less time people spend together, the less chance there is of this happening.

Curfew was imposed by the government and Dr. Arnold pointed out that the tendency is for the public to go out of their houses the moment it is lifted. Stay inside your house, curfew or no curfew insists Arnold. Social distancing is of paramount importance if we are to eradicate this disease completely. Arnold pointed out that closing schools for five weeks was a wise step by the Government considering the fact that in any given school the school community may number over 500.

“There are simple steps that can be taken to prevent infection. Avoiding crowds is one step. Giving priority to hygiene is another step. Soap and water may seem trivial but they can help in preventing infection. Also, there are people who are at a higher risk. They can be people who are 65 years or older. People with medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes and lung disease are at a higher risk. These people need to be very careful. In their case I would say social distancing can save lives,” said Dr. Arnold.

Common symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough and shortness of breath.

Muscle pain, diarrhea and sore throat are less common. While the majority of cases result in mild symptoms, some progress to severe pneumonia and multi-organ failure.


Isolation vs Quarantine

It is important to point out that Isolation and Quarantine are two very different things. Isolation is used to separate ill persons who have a communicable disease from those who are healthy. Isolation restricts the movement of ill persons to help stop the spread of certain diseases. For example, hospitals use isolation for patients with infectious tuberculosis. Quarantine is used to separate and restrict the movement of healthy persons who may have been exposed to a communicable disease to see if they become ill. These people may have been exposed to a disease and do not know it, or they may have the disease but do not show symptoms. Quarantine can also help limit the spread of communicable disease.



  • 14 days is the considered the incubation period of COVID-19, although symptoms can appear within a few days of exposure.
  • Self-monitoring might include regularly checking your temperature and watching for signs of a respiratory illness, such as fever, cough or shortness of breath, ccording to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It also involves limiting interaction with others.
  • Say you attended a large conference and the person speaking at the podium was later diagnosed with the virus. Those people may want to strictly Self-monitor. But if you had a long conversation with that person and that person coughed or sneezed on you, you would then Self-quarantine.Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, for example, is Self-Quarantining because his wife tested positive for the virus after returning from a trip to Great Britain.
  • Self -Quarantining means staying home and away from other people as much as possible for that 14-day period. People in this circumstance who don't live alone should do their best to retreat to their room or find a separate area in their home, and they shouldn't go out shopping, eating or socializing. Don't sleep in the same bedroom and try to use a separate toilet. They should also be careful with dishes. It should go right from you into the dishwasher.
  • If you are under a self-quarantine because of possible exposure and then develop a fever, a cough or shortness of breath, call your doctor, local hospital or public health department to find out what to do. For mild cases, physicians may direct you to stay home and treat your symptoms with over-the-counter fever reducers and other treatments. Those with more serious symptoms and people in higher-risk groups may be directed to where to seek medical care.
  • A Diagnosis of COVID-19 triggers Isolation. Infectious disease precautions are then much more rigid than in self-quarantine. Medical staff, for example, wear gear that is more protective. In addition, the person in isolation would be asked to wear a mask when leaving their room or traveling from home to a medical facility to try to prevent spreading droplets that might contain the virus.
  •  Quarantine is when under state or federal law individuals or groups are essentially on lockdown.



  • Stay at home if you can and avoid gatherings as much as possible.
  • If you must go out in public, if it is unavoidable, then keep a distance of about six feet from others.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after being in a public place.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • If you are sick, stay at home unless you need to get medical care.
  • Think about others and cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing and sneezing and throw used tissues in the trash.
  • If a tissue is not available, cough or sneeze into your elbow or sleeve and not your hands.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily.
  • Wear a face mask if you are sick – you should wear a facemask when you are around other people and before you enter a healthcare provider’s office.
  • Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure. Call your doctor for medical advice if you think you have been exposed to COVID-19.



Contact your healthcare provider to ask about obtaining extra necessary medications to have on hand in case there is an outbreak of COVID-19 in your community and if you need to stay at home for a prolonged period of time. If you cannot get extra medications, consider using a mail order option.

Be sure you have over the counter medicines and medical supplies (tissues) to treat fever and other symptoms.

Have enough household items and groceries on hand, so that you will be prepared to stay at home for a period of time. 


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