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Boscola Bulletin

Prepare. Don’t Panic. 

As of today, there are no known cases of the Coronavirus, COVID-19, in Pennsylvania. There are screening guidelines in place to make sure that if COVID-19 were to make its way to Pennsylvania, we are prepared to deal with & help prevent a rapid spread of the disease.   
Coronavirus Information Sheet - click to download.Last week Pennsylvania Secretary of Health, Dr. Rachel Levine, outlined the Wolf Administration’s steps to prepare for community spread of the coronavirus known as COVID-19, as well as what Pennsylvanians can do now.

To date, the Wolf Administration has:

  • Activated the Department of Health’s Emergency Operations Center to allow for enhanced response coordination;
  • Maintained communication and outreach with federal, state and local partners;
  • Provided symptom monitoring for residents returning to Pennsylvania from China;
  • Provided information to health care professionals, businesses and educational settings; and
  • Reviewed and adapted current pandemic flu plans for COVID-19.

In the event of an outbreak in the Commonwealth, much of the response would focus on treating the sick, isolating them to prevent spread, and quarantining people, typically for 14 days, who may have been exposed

The Department of Health has put together a page on their website dedicated to the Coronavirus.  The page can be viewed by clicking here or visiting www.health.pa.gov and clicking on the “Coronavirus Information” tab. The page provides more detailed information on the virus, symptoms, how it can spread, and how you can protect yourself.

Should I wear a mask or respirator in public?

The CDC does not recommend wearing masks or respirators outside of workplaces settings (in the community). A respirator is a personal protective device that is worn on the face or head and covers at least the nose and mouth. Most often, spread of respiratory viruses from person-to-person happens among close contacts (within 6 feet). It is important that these devices are readily available to health care workers and others who need them.

Should I cancel my travel because of novel coronavirus?

At this time, domestic travel has not been placed on any restriction list however just remember to take everyday precautions of washing your hands, not touching your face and avoiding sick people. 

Regarding international travel, the COVID-19 outbreak has been concentrated in China, and CDC recommends avoiding all nonessential travel to China. For travel advice for other countries, please visit that country's Destination Page or Travel Health Notices page on the CDC's website.

Coronavirus Tests Available in PA by End of This Week

Coronavirus TestsAccording to the Pennsylvania Department of Health, they expect to be running their own tests for the new coronavirus, COVID-19, by the end of this week.  The department will continue to forward the tests to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for confirmation however the turnaround times should lessen as the CDC now only has to confirm positive samples rather than perform ALL the testing. 

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provided states with testing kits, but they turned out to be faulty and were shipped back. The CDC is working on the problem, but it’s unclear how long it will take.

As always, feel free to contact my office with ANY questions or concerns you may have regarding the Coronavirus or any other state-related issue – my staff is always ready to assist you!

(p.s. make sure you wash your hands!)

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Offices of State Senator Lisa M. Boscola

www.senatorboscola.com

BETHLEHEM OFFICE
One East Broad Street
Suite 120
Bethlehem, PA 18018
(610) 868-8667
Fax: (610) 861-2184
Toll-free: 1-877-535-1818
EASTON OFFICE
1701 Washington Blvd.
Easton, PA 18042
(610) 250-5627
(610) 250-5629
Fax: (610) 250-1889
HARRISBURG OFFICE
458 Main Capitol Building
Senate Box 203018
Harrisburg, PA 17120-3018
(717) 787-4236
Fax: (717) 783-1257
Senate of PA:
1-800-364-158 (TTY)