Board of Health Update on Flu and Coronavirus

Board of Health Update on Coronavirus and 2020 Flu Season

On February 3, 2020, the Department of Public Health (DPH) issued a statement confirming the first case of Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in a man who returned to Boston from Wuhan City, China, where the coronavirus was initially detected in December, 2019. The young man sought medical care upon his return to Boston and is in isolation until cleared by Public Health Officials. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is continually monitoring the outbreak of this respiratory illness.

DPH states that the risk to Massachusetts residents remains low at this time.

DPH has launched a new website that provides up-to-date information on the status of 2019-nCoV:  https://www.mass.gov/2019coronavirus

The Topsfield Board of Health will update this website with information as it becomes available.

Presently, the risk of flu is a primary concern as Massachusetts is experiencing an active flu season. The Board of Health recommends the following preventative measures to combat the flu:

Wash your hands often with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand gel.

Cough or sneeze into a tissue or into the inside of your elbow if you don’t have a tissue.  Throw tissues away and wash your hands.  Always wash your hands after touching your eyes, nose or mouth.

Use household cleaners to clean frequently touched surfaces, like doorknobs, toys, and phones.

Avoid close physical contact with people who are sick.  Try to stay at least 3-6 feet from someone who shows symptoms.

Get the flu vaccine every year as soon as it is available.

And always, contact your doctor and stay home from work and school if you get sick with a flu-like illness (fever with cough or sore throat) and avoid contact with others so the virus does not spread. When dealing with the flu, stay at home until you have been free from fever for at least 24 hours after your last dose of fever-reducing medication (like Tylenol, Advil or Motrin). For most people this will mean staying at home for about 4 days.

For more information about flu risk and prevention in Massachusetts, please visit https://www.mass.gov/info-details/what-should-i-know-about-flu If you have further questions, please call the Topsfield Board of Health Agent, Wendy Hansbury, at 978-887-1520.