The Indiana State Department of Health recently confirmed the first cases of coronavirus and declared a public health emergency. As the number of COVID-19 cases in Indiana rises, the more important it becomes for Hoosiers to be aware of best practices to prevent the spread of this virus.
Indiana leaders, local health departments, hospitals, ISDH, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are working together to identify patients and follow control protocols. By issuing a public health emergency, Indiana is receiving more than $10 million in federal funding to control and stop the spread of coronavirus.
However, there are still actions we can all take individually to protect ourselves from any respiratory illness, including the flu, like:
- Washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer;
- Avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands;
- Avoiding close contact with people who are sick;
- Staying home when you are sick;
- Covering your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash; and
- Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces.
If you are experiencing symptoms of the coronavirus, including but not limited to a fever, cough or shortness of breath, contact ISDH immediately for next steps. The state health department call center is staffed 24/7 to provide guidance from the CDC to health care providers and the public. From 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET, call 317-233-7125. Calls after 8 p.m. ET should go to 317-233-1325 and will be answered by an on-call epidemiologist.
This is an ongoing situation and is evolving rapidly. ISDH provides live updates as new information becomes available. For more information, Hoosiers can also visit the Indiana State Department of Health online here, on Twitter and on Facebook.