The Medina County Health Department is working to provide accurate information to public partners about the novel coronavirus. The risk of contracting this novel (meaning never seen before) coronavirus remains low, but they recognize there could be residents with greater concern.
The Centers for Disease Control issued a level 4 travel warning to China. It’s the highest travel advisory the U.S. issues, usually reserved for such nations as Iraq, Iran and North Korea.
Businesses with traveling employees might have questions about the current screening process. Below is the process currently being followed at these airports.
CDC and US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) are implementing enhanced health screenings to detect travelers with fever, cough, or difficulty breathing when entering the United States.
The screening procedures include:
- Travelers fill out a short questionnaire about their travel, any symptoms, and contact information.
- CDC staff take the temperature of each traveler with a hand-held non-contact thermometer (thermometers that do not touch the skin) and observe the traveler for cough or difficulty breathing. If sick travelers are identified, CDC evaluates them further to determine whether they should be taken to a hospital for medical evaluation and to get care as needed.
If the traveler does not have symptoms, CDC staff will provide health information cards to take with them. The cards tell travelers what symptoms to look out for, and what to do if they develop symptoms within 14 days after leaving China. This health assessment and request for persons to monitor their health is part of a layered approach to limiting the spread of disease. When used with other public health measures, enhanced entry screening can strengthen our efforts to protect the United States from 2019-nCoV and other diseases.
“We want employers to understand the airport screening process and be able to advise their employees,” said commissioner Krista Wasowski in an updated news release. “Also, while this is a new virus strain, the process we have as a Health Department to monitor and investigate cases is what we do every day. Public health is always 24/7.”
Meanwhile, Illinois Department of Health officials have confirmed a second case of coronavirus in their state. It’s the first confirmed case in the U.S. where the virus was transmitted by human-to-human contact. According to the Ohio Department of Health, that person recently visited Cleveland, but was “not infectious at the time.”