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Important Information for Berks County Regarding COVID-19

Mar 04, 2020
Public Health

Berks Community Television (BCTV) is devoted to being the “go to” place for community information. With growing concern and alert surrounding the coronavirus and COVID-19, BCTV is sharing important information from the CDC regarding the outbreak and how citizens can better protect themselves and loved ones from getting sick.

You can visit the County of Berks COVID 19 Information Page Here

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is caused by a new strain of coronavirus, which is still being researched. It is a respiratory illness that is spread person to person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to the common cold. Disease symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

Symptoms can appear 2-14 days after first exposure.

There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. However, there are many ways to prevent the spread of the virus and other respiratory diseases, including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

There are currently NO reported cases of COVID-19 in Berks County. However, if you or a loved one suspect you are infected with the virus or another respiratory illness:

  • Stay home, except to seek medical care.
    • Do not go to work, school, or other public areas, and avoid using public transportation and ride-sharing.
  • If you attempt to seek medical care, call the doctor’s office ahead of time so the medical staff can take necessary precautions to prevent exposure or spreading to other patients.
  • Separate yourself from other people and any animals at home.
  • Wear a face mask.
  • Cover your mouth and nose while coughing or sneezing.
  • Wash your hands often, as read above.
  • Avoid sharing personal items.
  • Clean all frequently touched surfaces every day.
  • Monitor for worsening symptoms.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential travel to China and South Korea. CDC also advises that older adults and those with chronic medical conditions consider postponing nonessential travel to Iran, Italy, and Japan. Travelers should practice usual precautions when traveling to Hong Kong.

You can read more information and updates on the coronavirus on the CDC’s website.

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