Dear Halifax Community,
Halifax County Schools recognize your concerns for the encroaching spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus) and its potential impact on schools. As an update, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s web-link (https://www.cdc.gov/) has been added to the Halifax County Schools' website (https://www.halifax.k12.nc.us/). Use the informational link to learn more about how not to spread COVID-19 (coronavirus). Consider downloading our student-friendly, informational brochure to share various prevention strategies and healthy practices with your child(ren) and neighbors.
There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). However, it is important that we understand that “everyone exhibiting symptoms of cold or flu should not be assumed to have COVID-19” (coronavirus). One of the best ways to prevent this illness, is to avoid being exposed to the virus. The CDC recommends everyday preventive actions to inhibit the spread of respiratory diseases. It is important that we continue to rely on common sense prevention --just as we did when advising our community about the "swine flu" (H1N1) in 2009. As we await guidance from the CDC for further preventive instructions, we encourage you to be thoughtful, and follow common practices.
As a community, let us:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unclean hands.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue; then, throw used tissues in the trash.
- Wash your hands throughout the day with soap and water for at least 20 seconds: when using the restroom; blowing your nose; coughing or sneezing into your hand. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water as germs are not readily seen with the physical eye.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray, wipe and/or Clorox solution in the home.
- Follow Centers for Disease Control (CDC’s) recommendations for using a facemask.
- CDC does not recommend that people “who are well” wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19. Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a health care facility).
- For information about handwashing, see CDC’s Handwashing website.
- For information specific to healthcare, see CDC’s Hand Hygiene in Healthcare Settings
The items listed above, are everyday habits that can help prevent the spread of germs and viruses. Let us not panic in the face of the unknown, but let us stay focused and committed to what we can do individually to make a positive difference in the health of our community.
Dr. Eric Cunningham