Tips for protecting yourself from the Coronavirus

Local News

HONOLULU (KHON2) — There’s now a second confirmed case of the Wuhan Coronavirus in the US.

The Centers for Disease Control says the patient, a woman in her 60s, is in isolation at a Chicago Hospital.

Officials say she flew from Wuhan to Chicago on January 13, and was not ill while traveling.

Health officials do not think she spread the virus, and say she had limited contact with others since returning to Chicago.

So far, health officials are investigating 63 suspected cases in 22 states.

The Department of Health says it is not currently investigating any cases of Coronavirus here in Hawaii which is good news.

So far five US airports are conducting enhanced screening for the virus but so far not here in Hawaii.

However there are a few things you can do before getting on a flight to keep yourself safe

Millions of people travel across the globe daily making airplanes and airports a hot spot for catching a virus

“People are coming and going more than ever so with it there’s going to be diseases like this that are transmitted quickly,” said Dr. Robert Ruggieri, Medical Director Island Urgent Care.

So far five US airports are screening people for flu like symptoms and direct flights from certain provinces in China have been restricted.

“But that doesn’t prevent people from traveling to other counties and then coming here,” said Dr. Ruggieri.

He says there are a few things you can do when you get on the plane to prevent yourself from getting sick, wear a face mask, and if people near you are sick ask to move to another part of the plane.

“Generally viruses travel about six feet and their infectious within six feet of someone who coughs or sneezes,” said Ruggieri.

He says drug store face masks are only 60 percent effective but it’s better than wearing nothing.

He says more importantly clean surfaces around you with an anti bacterial wipe.

“Viruses can live a long time on certain surfaces some surfaces more than others,” said Ruggieri. “Some viruses more than others. But they rapidly loose their effectiveness to transmit infection. So if you wipe it down within a couple of hours you’ve effectively killed it. If you wipe it down right away you’ve killed it.”

As for the air onboard the flight?

“Once the virus gets caught up in the a/c on the plane it would get trapped in some of the filters they have,” said Ruggieri. “Even if it were to circulate through it would be so diffused by the time it gets out that you don’t have to worry about it.”

The doctor also recommends changing your travel plans if you feel sick.

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