What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 is a new (or novel) virus that belongs to a family of viruses called Coronaviruses. There are seven known Coronaviruses which infects humans and animals. This new coronavirus has not been seen in humans before.
For more information, visit the CDC's website.
What are COVID-19 symptoms?
Primary symptoms of COVID-19 are:
- Shortness of breath
Symptoms may appear anywhere from 2 to 14 days after an individual is exposed to COVID-19.
What should I do if I think I have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it?
If you have symptoms that include fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, and you have had contact with a person with COVID-19 or have traveled to a country impacted by COVID-19, please call ahead to urgent care or your doctor’s office. It is important to call ahead so that precautions can be taken by you and by the medical staff if you are COVID-19 positive.
Locally, Unity Point Health also has a Virtual Care option which can be utilized online here.
Webster County Public Health also has a designated COVID-19 hotline and email which is staffed daily. All calls to 515-227-7153 or email WebCoCOVID@webstercountyia.org.
What is social distancing?
Social distancing is the conscious effort to reduce close contact between people and hopefully stymie community transmission of COVID-19. This means using personal responsibility to stay home when sick and to consider not attending events where many people will be in attendance and where germs could easily spread. Social distancing does not mean that residents are quarantined inside of their homes and are unable to leave.
Does this mean I have to stay home and can’t attend events or parties?
At this time, Webster County Public Health will not mandate that community or personal events are cancelled. However, residents are asked to use personal responsibility when considering attending or hosting an event. Each time that you are out in public and around people, you are creating a new link and possibility for transmission.
Does this mean that my kids can’t play outside?
Social distancing does not mean that people must remain in their homes under strict self quarantine. Children may play outside. In fact, the vitamin D and opportunity to play will be good for them. However, consider not playing in large groups or using public facilities like playground structures.
Can I go to the store? Do I need to stockpile supplies?
Stores will remain open based on individual corporate policies. Social distancing is the effort to reduce close contact between people. However, trips to the grocery store will be necessary for essential items. Limit your trips and go at times when the store is typically less busy. Wipe down the shopping cart handle and try not to touch items that you don’t need. Maintain distance from others when shopping. Hoarding supplies negatively impacts others so only buy what you need and leave some for others. We encourage residents to have a 14 day supply of prescription medications, pain relievers, soap, hand sanitizer, and tissues on hand.