El Paso officials preparing in case of Coronavirus outbreak

Coronavirus

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – As the Coronavirus continues to spread, El Paso health officials are preparing.

There are currently no confirmed cases in El Paso, but health officials are cautious as cases have been confirmed in the region.

Confirmed cases near El Paso include:

  • San Antonio, Texas
  • Tempe, Arizona
  • Two cases in Mexico

El Paso Public Health Officials say El Pasoans don’t need to worry but it’s important to be aware.

“Wash your hands yeah that’s one thing you should do,” said Lorie Lemus an El Pasoan.

“Be clean and wash your hands,” said Bianca Hernandez from Sunland Park New Mexico.

That message is shared over and over by officials, including those with the Health Department: wash your hands.

“We don’t have any cases in El Paso right now. That’s very critical, so right now we’re really given the opportunity to practice prevention,” said Armando Saldivar a spokesman for the El Paso Department of Public Health.

The Department of Public Health says if you have flu-like symptoms to stay home from work. Also, if you want to get tested to call your doctor before going to their office.

The way the virus is spread is by coughing or sneezing, shaking hands or touching an object with the virus on it.

This has also raised concerns as customers wonder if packages from overseas are safe.

“How long does the virus stay say in a package or something that you’re receiving from overseas? That’s something that we just don’t have enough information about,” said Saldivar.

However, the El Paso Emergency Preparedness Department says they have plans in place in case of an outbreak.

“We will try to place that person under quarantine for those 14 days, which are the critical ones,” said Ruth Castillo the Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program Manager.

The only problem, there is still no treatment available.

“This is serious, take it seriously because it’s coming out,” said El Paso resident Lorie Lemus.

El Paso Public Health Officials say if you haven’t traveled to China or come in contact with someone infected your chances of getting the Coronavirus are very low. However, everyone should be taking preventative measures.

For more info go to http://www.elpasotexas.gov/public-health/current-events/novel-coronavirus.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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