About COVID 19
A novel coronavirus is a new coronavirus that has not been previously identified. The virus causing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), is not the same as the coronaviruses that commonly circulate among humans and cause mild illness, like the common cold.
There are many types of human coronaviruses including some that commonly cause mild upper-respiratory tract illnesses. COVID-19 is a new disease, caused by a novel (or new) coronavirus that has not previously been seen in humans.
On February 11, 2020 the World Health Organization announced an official name for the disease that is causing the 2019 novel coronavirus outbreak, first identified in Wuhan China. The new name of this disease is coronavirus disease 2019, abbreviated as COVID-19. In COVID-19, ‘CO’ stands for ‘corona,’ ‘VI’ for ‘virus,’ and ‘D’ for disease. Formerly, this disease was referred to as “2019 novel coronavirus” or “2019-nCoV”.
According to the CDC, the virus that causes COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, most commonly spreads between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet, or 2 arm lengths). It spreads through respiratory droplets or small particles, such as those in aerosols, produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, sings, talks, or breathes.
These particles can be inhaled into the nose, mouth, airways, and lungs and cause infection. This is thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
Droplets can also land on surfaces and objects and be transferred by touch. A person may get COVID-19 by touching the surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or eyes. Spread from touching surfaces is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
It is possible that COVID-19 may spread through the droplets and airborne particles that are formed when a person who has COVID-19 coughs, sneezes, sings, talks, or breathes. There is growing evidence that droplets and airborne particles can remain suspended in the air and be breathed in by others, and travel distances beyond 6 feet (for example, during choir practice, in restaurants, or in fitness classes). In general, indoor environments without good ventilation increase this risk.
COVID-19 seems to be spreading easily and sustainably in the community (“community spread”) in many affected geographic areas. Community spread means people have been infected with the virus in an area, including some who are not sure how or where they became infected.
The following recommendations are provided by the CDC and offered as a matter of convenience. Check their website often for updates as they learn more through continued COVID-19 research.
Stay 6 feet away from others
- Inside your home: Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- If possible, maintain at least 6 feet between the person who is sick and other household members.
- Outside your home: Put at least 6 feet of distance between yourself and people who don’t live in your household.
- Remember that some people without symptoms may be able to spread virus.
- Keeping distance from others is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
- This principal is known as social distancing.
- Being in crowds put you at higher risk for COVID-19. The greater the number of people gathered, the higher the risk will be.
Avoid poorly ventilated spaces
- Avoid indoor spaces that do not offer fresh air from the outdoors as much as possible. If indoors, bring in fresh air by opening windows and doors, if possible.
Wash your hands often
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- It’s especially important to wash:
- Before eating or preparing food
- Before touching your face
- After using the restroom
- After leaving a public place
- After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
- After handling your mask
- After changing a diaper
- After caring for someone sick
- After touching animals or pets
- If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
Cover coughs and sneezes
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow and do not spit.
- Discard used tissues in the trash.
- Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
Clean and disinfect
- Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
- If surfaces are dirty, clean them. Use detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.
- Then, use a household disinfectant. Use products from EPA’s List N: Disinfectants for Coronavirus (COVID-19) according to manufacturer’s labeled directions.
Monitor Your Health Daily
- Be alert for symptoms. Watch for fever, cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19.
- Especially important if you are running essential errands, going into the office or workplace, and in settings where it may be difficult to keep a physical distance of 6 feet.
- Take your temperature if symptoms develop.
- Don’t take your temperature within 30 minutes of exercising or after taking medications that could lower your temperature, like acetaminophen.
- Follow CDC guidance if symptoms develop.
Wear a mask over your nose and mouth
- Masks help prevent you from getting or spreading the virus. They are not intended to be a substitute for social distancing or other recommendations. They are intended to further reduce the risk of spreading the virus, especially when the person carrying the virus is unaware that they have it and may be without symptoms.
- You could spread COVID-19 to others even if you do not feel sick.
- Everyone should wear a mask in public settings and when around people who don’t live in your household, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.
- Masks should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
- Avoid wearing masks meant for a healthcare worker. Currently, surgical masks and N95 respirators are critical supplies that should be reserved for healthcare workers and other first responders.
- Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The mask is not a substitute for social distancing.
PROTECT YOUR HEALTH During FLU SEASON
It’s likely that flu viruses and the virus that causes COVID-19 will both spread during flu season. Healthcare systems could be overwhelmed treating both patients with flu and patients with COVID-19. This means getting a flu vaccine during a pandemic is more important than ever.
While getting a flu vaccine will not protect against COVID-19 there are many important benefits, such as:
- Flu vaccines have been shown to reduce the risk of flu illness, hospitalization, and death.
- Getting a flu vaccine can also save healthcare resources for the care of patients with COVID-19.
This webpage is being moved from "Active Incidents" to "Past Incidents" and serves as a historical archive. This is being done in conjunction with the State Emergency Operations Center announcing its demobilization on November 10, 2022.
Do not use the information to make decisions for the present context. The content was written when the incident was active and is now considered old data or guidance.
Cases in Berrien County
The Berrien County Health Department maintains data to analyze cases in Berrien County.
- A Data Dashboard tracking Case Counts and Other Statistics was maintained until September 19, 2021. Data on that date was:
- Total Confirmed and Probable Cases: 17,066 people (53.87% were Females, 2,600 were under 19 years old)
- 286 Confirmed Deaths, 21 additional Deaths "probably" associated with COVID19.
- 53.75% Males. (0 under 19 years old) (1 was 20-29) (2 were 30-39) (5 were 40-49) (17 were 50-59) (42 were 60-69) (72 were 70-79) and (168 were 80+).
- A lot of additional information is located here.
Cases In the State of Michigan
The State of Michigan Department of Health and Human Services maintains data to analyze cases in Michigan.
- They have many datasets and webpage dashboards that are located here.
- Statewide Data on September 08, 2022 reflected:
- 2,907,819 Confirmed and probable cases
- 39,574 Deaths
Cases in the United States of America
The US CDC maintains data to analyze cases in the United States.
- They have a COVID tracking webpage located here.
- Nationwide Data on September 08, 2022 reflected:
- 97,604,763 Total Cases
- 1,068,667 Deaths