In an attempt to curtail fear and panic over the coronavirus, the N.C. Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI), has issued a statement urging North Carolinians to focus on the facts surrounding the virus.
NCDPI’s statement came after “numerous inquiries” from school districts and parents about the potential impact of the virus on schools across the state.
Here’s what the NCDPI shared about the virus:
- There are no cases in North Carolina.
- The flu infects and results in many more deaths every year than we are currently discussing with 2019-nCoV.
- The symptoms presented look much like a cold or early flu, and school nurses and schools are being advised to follow their same policies and procedures in place for responding to other communicable diseases.
State health officials reported 15 more flu deaths last week, which pushed the total to 115 for the 2019-2020 season.
There have been 2,462 deaths worldwide due to the coronavirus, according to the CDC. The United States has 14 cases diagnosed. An additional 39 cases have occurred among repatriated persons to push the current total to 53 cases in the U.S.
NCDPI officials said they are in contact with N.C. Division of Public Health and the Department of Health and Human Services. They are discussing and planning steps to take if the virus threatens North Carolina.
Meanwhile, the virus has devastated China. Mainland China has nearly 77,000 infections and there are more than 2,000 people dead.
The government has closed schools indefinitely and are ramping up online opportunities for students to continue their studies.