SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – A new warning from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is raising concerns across the country. Local community members say they are worried about how the Coronavirus could impact Georgia’s communities.
Prevention Principal Deputy Director for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Anne Schuchat, addressed the possibility of the virus becoming a pandemic in a public update on Tuesday.
“It’s not so much a question of if this will happen anymore, but rather more a question of when this will happen and how many people in this country will become infected,” Schuchat stated.
More than 50 cases of the virus have been confirmed in the United States.
Dr. Lawton Davis, the Director of the Coastal Health District, said none of the reported cases are in Georgia, and no locals are currently under quarantine. He advised people to plan in order to be prepared in the event of a pandemic. The local health expert said it is important to not “overreact,” but recommended that people still consider potential scenarios such as school closures— highlighting it as a likely response if the virus continues to spread in the U.S.
Davis encouraged people to wash their hands and avoid close contact with people who are sick as well as adhere to the guidelines stated by the CDC.
He referenced the national organization’s comments on the virus as a preemptive strategy to ensure the population has a plan: “They’re concerned just because it’s not going away and they’re encouraging people to begin thinking about how we might react should it actually arrive on our doorstep. And really treating it like a really bad outbreak of influenza that’ s kind of the easiest way for people to think about it.”