[WFLA] Rep. Crist discusses preps for potential coronavirus outbreak in Pinellas County
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) - Rep. Charlie Crist visited the Community Health Center of Pinellas on Monday and met with medical staff to address preparations for any potential coronavirus outbreak in Pinellas County.
"Coronavirus is a new virus which poses health risks to our community and patients. Certainly, we have some significant concerns regarding it," Chief Medical Officer Dr. Nichelle Threadgill said. "Like influenza, it is an infection that can easily spread."
Earlier this month, Rep. Crist (D-FL-13) sent a letter to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calling for greater action and transparency as the country prepares for to possibly combat the coronavirus.
"It's hard for us to address it if we don't know what the facts are," said Crist.
In the letter addressed to the CDC's director Robert Redfield, Crist urges the federal agency to focus on outreach, prevention and education for vulnerable communities such as seniors and children, along with those with weak immune systems.
"By concealing early information about the disease, the Chinese government enabled its spread along with the spread of fear and misinformation. To avoid a repeat of that in the United States, transparency is key," said Crist.
Coronavirus in the US
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has listed 398 people under investigation for the novel coronavirus in 37 states, according to an update posted to the agency's website on Monday. Hover over the bars to see the numbers.
The coronavirus was first reported in China on Dec. 31, 2019, and now has more than 40,000 confirmed cases worldwide. More than 900 people have died.
"Stay on top of it, be in tune to what is going on, listen to health care professionals. Take their advice and seek their counsel, get a flu shot and just be mindful," said Crist.
Coronavirus symptoms have some similarities with the flu including runny nose, headache, cough and fever.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, shortness of breath, body aches and chills could be associated with more dangerous types of the coronavirus. In extreme cases of the coronavirus, the virus may cause pneumonia, bronchitis, kidney failure and death.
Dr. Threadgill says there is a plan in place if there is a potential coronavirus outbreak in Pinellas County.
"We are vigilant with questioning and screening patients as they present respiratory symptoms or generally the initial presentation and so isolation and prevention is really the key at this point," said Threadgill.
More News in News
The coronavirus outbreak continues to spread, and scammers are exploiting the crisis to defraud you. Scammers are soliciting bitcoin donations to help "fight the virus," while investors in U.S. microcap stocks are another easy target. Don't fall
China's Hubei province, the epicenter of the coronavirus epidemic, reported 1,933 new cases and 100 new deaths on Feb. 16, the local health authority said on Monday. The number of new cases rose nearly 5% from
KUWAIT - An Amiri decree has been issued evening to carry out a limited cabinet reshuffle, said Tareq Al-Mezrim, head of the Center for Government Communication. KUWAIT - His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber
The Chairman, Association of Public Health Physicians of Nigeria in Oyo State, Dr Olugbade Omotajo, has urged the Federal Government to intensify efforts at preventing the outbreak of coronavirus in Nigeria. Omotajo gave the advice
TOKYO - Americans Cheryl and Paul Molesky decided to trade one coronavirus quarantine for another. The couple from Syracuse, New York, made the decision to cut short a 14-day quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship