Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information
This outbreak began in early December 2019 and continues to expand in scope and magnitude. Chinese health officials have reported hundreds of cases in the city of Wuhan and severe illness has been reported, including deaths. Cases have also been identified in travelers from Wuhan to other parts of China and other countries, including the United States. We expect more cases to be confirmed. Person-to-person spread is occurring though it’s unclear how easily this virus is spreading between people at this time.
As questions and concerns about Coronavirus (COVID-19) increase across North Carolina, The North Carolina Division of Public Health would like the public to use the Coronavirus Helpline. The phone number to the helpline is 1-866-462-3821.
- For general Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information you can visit the CDC’s website or North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services page.
- Guidance for Schools and Childcare can be found at the CDC’s website or North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services page.
- Guidance for Long-term Care Facilities can be found at the CDC’s website or North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services page.
In general, the best practices for these establishments is:
- Minimize person to person contact, and practice good hand hygiene:
- Provide tissues and no-touch disposal receptacles for use by employees.
- Instruct employees to clean their hands often with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60-95% alcohol, or wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty.
- Provide soap and water and alcohol-based hand rubs in the workplace. Ensure that adequate supplies are maintained. Place hand rubs in multiple locations or in conference rooms to encourage hand hygiene.
- Encourage use of tissues and proper coughing/sneezing etiquette.
- Separate sick individuals and stay home when symptomatic
- Individuals who have symptoms of acute respiratory illness are recommended to stay home and not come to work or school until they are free of fever (100.4° F [37.8° C] or greater using an oral thermometer), signs of a fever, and any other symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g. cough suppressants).
- Perform routine environmental cleaning.
- Routinely clean frequently touched surfaces (e.g., doorknobs, light switches, countertops) with the cleaners typically used. Use all cleaning products according to the directions on the label.
- Provide disposable wipes so that commonly used surfaces (e.g., keyboards, desks, remote controls) can be wiped down by students and staff before each use.
The CDC recommends using products that have been registered with the EPA with novel virus claims. These products must be used according to manufacturer’s instructions. The full list of products can be found here.