On January 7, 2020, a novel or new coronavirus (2019-nCoV) was identified in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China (WHO, 2020b) which has caused, according to news reports, illness in more than 2,700 people and over 80 deaths. Five cases have been reported in the United States (CDC, 2020). You may recall the public health crises that occurred with the outbreaks of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV) in 2002 and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) in 2012. Over an eight-month period, from November 2002 to July 2003, there were over 8000 cases of SARS-CoV, with over 770 fatalities (World Health Organization [WHO], 2003). To date, MERS-CoV has affected over 2400 people in 27 countries, including over 850 deaths (World Health Organization [WHO], 2020a). Both of these illnesses were caused by a type of coronavirus (CoV), named for their spiked surfaces that resemble crowns. We don’t know much about 2019-nCoV except that it can cause a severe acute respiratory infection (SARI) with symptoms such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, and breathing difficulties (WHO, 2020b). Symptoms may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after exposure (CDC, 2020). Coronaviruses are typically transmitted between animals (i.e. cats, camels, and bats) and humans, however it appears that the 2019-nCoV may pass from human to human. Given the ease of global travel, this virus has the potential to quickly spread. Most of the cases have been reported in China with a few found in Japan, Thailand, South Korea, Hong Kong and the U.S. Travelers from Wuhan are being screened at major international airports and the city of Wuhan is now on lock down. A travel ban has been issued for 16 cities in the Hubei province.
AGAPE Care is ready and prepared to continue care or to initiate care for patients suspected of or currently infected with COVID-19
We hope this finds you well in these uncertain times. As information about COVID-19 (coronavirus) evolves each day, we at AGAPE CARE LLC. will continue to monitor updates about how coronavirus is affecting seniors and the senior living landscape. The health and well-being of your loved ones is the top priority, and below we’ve included information to assist you during this challenging time. We hope you find it helpful, and we thank you for your enduring trust. Be safe. Be well.
- AGAPE Care will be addressing the general patient census as possibly being potentially harmed if exposed to the virus. The skilled nurses will take the least amount of equipment into the home as possible. Any patient suspected of a respiratory infection will be directed to a drive through testing facility for a lab clarification.
- AGAPE Care will continue to be vigilant in caring for patients with confirmed Covid-19 virus. Our nursing staff will take every precaution to prevent the spread of Covid-19 or any other suspected communicable disease as well as educate the patients and families on the importance of strict health well-being management.
- There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
- The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus.
- The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.
- Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
- Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
- These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Put distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
- Throw used tissues in the trash.
- Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
- If surfaces are dirty, clean them: Use detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.