Massachusetts continues to prepare for the potential outbreak of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, that originated in Wuhan, Hubei, China. The risk of COVID-19 in the Commonwealth is low; in contrast, the risk of flu is high.
Our Department of Public Health has been in constant contact with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local partners, and launched a site that includes extensive information and is based on fact, not hype, at: mass.gov/2019coronavirus. The site includes resources and fact sheets translated in multiple languages that can be printed and shared.
These simple precautions will help prevent the spread of the flu and other respiratory illnesses:
- Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze, using a tissue or the inside of your elbow
- Wash your hands for 20 seconds with soap and warm water frequently and use hand sanitizer
- If you have a fever or feel sick, stay home and call your healthcare providerGet the flu vaccine – it is not too late!
- Find more information on the flu and where to get a flu vaccine here: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/what-should-i-know-about-flu
To date, there has been one confirmed case* of COVID-19 in Massachusetts; there have been more than 30,000 confirmed cases of the flu. The risk for coronavirus in the Commonwealth remains low; the risk for the flu is high.
Please stay informed by visiting both the MDPH and CDC websites. Bureaus are currently reviewing Continuation of Operations Plans. To prepare for potential community spread of COVID-19, please also think about your own personal preparedness and visit our website to learn more about developing a preparedness plan for you and your family.
Monica Bharel, MD, MPH
*Please note that there are now two confirmed cases as of 3/3/20.