Part 3 – COVID 19 – Perspective, Preparedness and Prevention over Panic


FORT WAYNE, IN (WOWO): It cannot be overstated. Panic and fear are not the right response when it comes to COVID-19 and the Coronavirus. Educating yourself, being aware and prepared will mitigate much of the risk associated with this epidemic. By all means, carefully vet the sources of your information.

Though it may be difficult to embrace, given the negative news that is being fostered on social media, the United States has several key advantages over other nations from a preparedness, prevention and treatment standpoint.

First, we had several weeks advance time to begin preparation on the medical front as well as community health and even infrastructure.

Second, the United States houses more of the world’s leading medical research facilities and has a more extensive hospital network than any other nation in the world.

Finally, our community health organizations built much of the procedure to respond to this from a community-wide level during the SARS outbreak in 2002, which was also caused by a coronavirus.

In short, we’ve seen enough and prepared for the worst-case scenario and had weeks to do so where places like China and Italy did not.


COVID-19 has not reached pandemic levels yet. In fact, the only thing that has reached pandemic levels, and then some, is the misinformation on social media. COVID-19 and the coronavirus are not a hoax, not a political ploy, not a bio-weapon released by the Chinese and not invented by vaccine companies to make money. Corona beer is not infused with the coronavirus , nor is the virus named after the beer. In fact, the only way you’ll become infected with coronavirus from drinking Corona Beer is if you share the bottle with someone who’s sick.

Not to minimize the concern over the coronavirus, but every single thing in the above paragraph has been put out on social media as “credible information” Consider though, the following:

As of this writing, since day one, we have seen 27 deaths in the United States from COVID-19. In the past week,

1177 have died from the flu,

746 died in car crashes

294 people have been shot to death all in the United States.

Nearly 12,500 will die this week from heart disease, which is, in one week in the US, three times the total deaths to date globally from COVID 19.

Just over 1,600 will die from diabetes and 2815 will die as a result of a stroke, according to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control.

According to NHTSA, nearly 60 will die on US Highways from distracted driving this week, more than twice that have died since day one in the U.S. from COVID-19. 30 people per day, or one every 50 minutes dies on American roads as a result of drunk driving.


Being prepared starts with being informed. The Allen County Department of Health has launched a hotline that can answer any questions, validate any information you get and provide guidance through the coronavirus epidemic. The hotline is staffed by health department personnel and is active from 8:00 am to 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday at (260) 449-4499. You can visit their website as well.

I-U Health has a virtual coronavirus screening through their Virtual Visits app for Android and iOS devices. It’s as simple as creating an account, answering questions and then, based upon your answers will give you recommendations, advice and next-steps. I-U Health recommends if you have symptoms, to use the virtual clinic app or calling your primary care physician before going to the emergency room.


Prevention against the coronavirus starts with simple hygiene:

  • Wash your hands like your life depends on it, because, simply, it does. Not only for the coronavirus, but for the other viruses and potential bacteria you come into contact with from touching elevator buttons, door handles or knobs, someone else’s hand, or the dirtiest thing on earth – money.
  • Stay home if you’re sick. (Same with your kids). Going to work sick is not a sign of dedication and admirable commitment, it’s irresponsible at best and reckless at worst. Don’t do it.
  • Disinfect frequently touched or handled surfaces. Shared pens, personal electronics, door handles or knobs, water taps, toilet flush handles, keyboards and counter and desk surfaces as well as remote controls.
  • Avoid meetings and crowded spaces. Especially those that are particularly confined and hard to leave, such as planes and conference rooms.
  • If you want to do things with your friends, pick and outdoor activity such as skiing or hiking rather than going bowling or to the movies. More fresh air and fewer germs.
  • Cough and sneeze into your elbow or a tissue – not into your hand. Stay away from those who sneeze, cough or otherwise appear to be sick.
  • Don’t touch your face, eyes or nose.
  • If you have a fever or body aches – stay home and call your doctor.
  • Stay well hydrated.
  • Don’t stockpile bath tissue or hand sanitizer. Charmin, as nice as it is, won’t save you. Neither will Purell. Keeping an adequate supply on hand is one thing – putting Costco out of business is another thing entirely. Simple soap and water is very effective.
  • Facemasks will not keep you from getting the coronavirus, or most others, because they are thousands of times smaller than the pores in the mask. If you’re sick, you can wear one to contain sneezes and coughs and transmitting the virus to others through body secretions.


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