Be vigilant…help stop the spread of COVID

Published 2:38 pm Friday, August 12, 2022

The COVID-19 pandemic demands that we remain vigilant in our daily lives, especially as school has resumed and with the season for colds and allergies approaching. COVID is out there, all around us.
According to Tennessee Department of Health statistics, the positivity rate for the past seven days in Carter County for COVID is above 37 percent. Carter County’s rate is the 11th highest in the state. Hospitalizations are up, so are deaths from COVID.
We must be more vigilant than ever in stopping the spread of COVID. And, we can do it by taking some simple steps to protect ourselves, our families, and our community.
The steps are:
1. Get a COVID-19 vaccine.
2. Wash your hands often with plain soap and water.
3. Cover your mouth and nose with a mask when around others.
4. Avoid crowds and practice social distancing.
During the spring and summer season, COVID precautions were relaxed as most returned to a normal way of life. There have been vacations, family gatherings, the resumption of church services. In Elizabethton, there have been numerous outdoor activities, which have drawn large crowds, such as the weekly car show downtown, the Covered Bridge concerts, ball games at Riverside Park — and very few people wear masks at these events. The same is true of people who shop at Wal-Mart and local grocery stores.
We must daily remind ourselves that COVID is still with us…that while some people experience mild cases, others get very sick, and yes, some people die from it.
COVID-19 usually causes respiratory symptoms, like a cold or flu. Symptoms include a runny nose and cough. But it can also affect other parts of the body.
COVID-19 mainly spreads through tiny droplets, often when an infected person sneezes or coughs but also when people talk and sing. The virus is particularly likely to spread in poorly ventilated and crowded rooms, so it’s essential you keep your distance.
You may also catch the virus by touching a contaminated surface and touching your eyes, nose or mouth. So make sure you wash your hands regularly.
While the general public is free to go and come as they please, we must remember that unfairly, nursing home residents pay the tab for our laxness. They are not the ones that spread the virus, but it’s the people on the outside, who carry it inside. And, then the residents end up being infected. They are the most vulnerable people in our society and they deserve better than what they are often handed. Employees, when they leave their jobs at the end of the shift, must remember that they still have an obligation to protect the ones they care for. Family members and friends, if you are sick or displaying symptoms of COVID, don’t visit.
This pandemic may never be over, but we can make things better for all by protecting ourselves and those around us. Everyone’s health is important — yours, mine, and the people we come in contact with on a daily basis. Do what you must to to protect those you live and work with.
Everyone’s life is important and it’s up to each of us to do what we can to respect each and every person by doing our part to keep them safe.

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