Zero cases of novel coronavirus discovered in 2019 (COVID-19) have been confirmed locally or in Ohio. Wood County Health Department has been preparing since early January to respond should the illness begin impacting our area.
The health department has a public health emergency preparedness team that includes an infectious disease expert, an emergency response planner, communication specialists and other public health officials who are trained and ready to respond. Wood County Health Department is also the regional public health coordinator for 18 counties in Northwest Ohio.
Over the last several months, the health department has coordinated with the Ohio Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Activities have included monitoring travelers returning from areas affected by COVID-19, and sharing information with partners such as health care providers, higher education, K-12 schools and local businesses.
While case numbers in the United States have increased and showed evidence of spreading within communities, there is still no confirmed COVID-19 activity in Ohio or Wood County. This is a new disease and there is more to learn about how it spreads, the severity of illness it causes, and to what extent it may spread in the United States. Generally, people more likely to be severely impacted by COVID-19 symptoms are older or have other medical conditions.
Because both influenza and coronavirus are transmitted by close contact between people and respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes, people can take everyday actions to prevent the spread of illnesses.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
- Avoid touching your mouth, nose, or eyes.
- Cover coughs/sneezes with your arm or a tissue.
- Avoid exposure to others who are sick, and stay home if you are ill.
- Get adequate sleep and eat well-balanced meals to ensure a healthy immune system.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
The CDC does not recommend the routine use of face masks by healthy members of the general public to prevent respiratory illness and is not recommending their use at this time.
Travelers should be aware that this international outbreak could affect their plans. Areas with risk of community spread of coronavirus currently include China, Hong Kong, Iran, Italy, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand. For more information, visit CDC’s Travelers’ Health page at www.cdc.gov/travel.
Resources are also available from the Ohio Department of Health, including updates on Tuesdays and Thursdays on possible COVID-19 cases within the state. For more information, go to www.coronavirus.ohio.gov.
The most recent local updates will be posted to the health department’s social media pages on Facebook and Twitter, @WCHDOhio. You can also contact the health department with questions by calling 419-352-8402.
The mission of Wood County Health Department is to prevent disease, promote healthy lifestyles and protect the health of everyone in Wood County. Our Community Health Center provides comprehensive medical services for men, women and children. We welcome all patients, including uninsured or underinsured clients, regardless of their ability to pay, and we accept most third-party insurance. For more information, visit www.WoodCountyHealth.org.