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It’s not going anywhere soon and this is how we plan to address it

Coronavirus suddenly became very real for Plumas County residents last week when the Public Health Agency announced that we had seven persons under investigation, or PUIs. For nearly 24 hours, little more than that was known. We asked for more information knowing that our readers would want to know where in the county the individuals were located, what were the circumstances of those who were under investigation and how were they being treated.

The next day brought more clarity. The individuals were known to have traveled to areas or been in situations where COVID-19 cases had been confirmed. The number had dropped from seven to six, and those individuals were being quarantined at home with continuous contact from public health nurses, while testing results were awaited. By Monday morning, we learned that all tests were negative.

The health agency declined to be more specific about where in the county these individuals are located out of privacy concerns. Presumably, that would change if they become confirmed cases, as has been the practice in other parts of the state, nation and world. As an example, with a recent case in New York, not only did health officials identify the individual, but also his relatives, home, the schools of his children, his route to work, etc. Experts say that containment is key and the best way to accomplish that is to notify those who may have been exposed unwittingly to what is a highly contagious virus.

We want to commend the local health agency on the proactive approach it has taken to work with the school district, local health care districts and other agencies. Almost immediately they formed a task force and hold regular meetings. They have established good communication lines so if events begin to unfold more quickly, all can react. There is an abundance of information to be found about the coronavirus and the public health agency has published some videos on its website to help educate the public. The agency also recommends that the public rely on the State Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control.

We at Feather Publishing will continue to bring as much information as possible as it becomes available. Beginning this week, a portion of our home page at plumasnews.com will be dedicated to the coronavirus and be used as a place to easily drop information. We are going to make this information available outside of our pay wall since it is important for public health and safety.

In the meantime, continue to do whatever you can to remain in good health. There is no shortage of information available on tips to clean surfaces, cell phones, shopping carts or how to open doors or press buttons. If you are sick stay home and definitely call ahead before you present yourself at the doctor’s office or hospital. Give health care providers an opportunity to protect themselves and others. All of these suggestions are relevant and even if one doesn’t have the coronavirus, they may help stop the spread of the common cold and flu.

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