Cases of the novel coronavirus continue to soar with record-breaking single-day cases occurring almost daily.
Even with news of a promising vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech and most recently by Moderna, one inescapable fact cannot be disputed: America and much of the world remains heavily in a pandemic.
“As COVID-19 continues to spread across the country and the world, we all must remain vigilant,” a spokesperson at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC] wrote in a statement posted on the organization’s website.
“The changes we have had to make to routines and daily life are extremely hard but these changes are even more important now and in the future. We must stop the spread of this new and dangerous virus. The more steps you and your family can take to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the safer you will be,” the statement concluded.
On Monday, Nov. 16, the total number of cases in the U.S. had soared past 10.5 million, according to Johns Hopkins University. More than 242,000 people have died in the U.S. since the outbreak of the pandemic in March.
The CDC has listed three important ways to slow the spread:
- Wear a mask to help stop the spread of COVID-19 to others.
- Stay at least 6 feet (about two arm lengths) from others who don’t live with you, particularly in crowded areas.
- Wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol.
To protect yourself when going out, the CDC lists the following:
- Wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth to help protect others.
- Choose a mask with two or more layers of washable, breathable fabric that fits snugly against the sides of your face.
- Stay 6 feet apart and avoid crowds.
- The more people you are in contact with, the more likely you are to be exposed to COVID-19.
- Avoid indoor spaces as much as possible, particularly ones that aren’t well ventilated.
- You may find it harder to stay 6 feet apart in indoor spaces.
- Wash your hands often.
- Use soap and water for 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place or hand sanitizer if soap and water aren’t available.
Finally, the CDC advises the following if you feel sick:
- Stay home except to get medical care. Most people with COVID-19 have mild illnesses and recover at home without medical care.
- Isolate yourself from other members of your family to prevent spread to them and the people that they may have contact with, like grandparents.
- If you have to leave isolation, wear a mask, stay 6 feet apart from others, wash your hands frequently and clean all touched surfaces.
- Even if you don’t feel sick, you can spread COVID-19 to others. Be sure that you protect everyone as though they are the most fragile person in your family.
- Get care immediately if you are having emergency warning signs, like trouble breathing, pain or pressure in chest.
Information in this report was provided by the CDC.