In a lengthy conversation about the hype regarding the COVID-19 or Corona virus,  Rae Ann Tucker-Marshall, the Henry County Director of Health Promotion, stressed that residents get their information from a reputable source, most importantly.

"The Stark-Henry County Health Department will report the numbers as we get them. Our sources are reputable." said Tucker-Marshall.   She further encourages the residents of Henry County to not be reactive, and look to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the Illinois Department of Public Health for credible and timely information regarding the virus. "Use common sense, right now we are more likely to see Influenza A or B than the Corona virus."

Importantly, please be aware of how you feel. Do not go out into public if you feel sick. Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds, (about the time it takes to sing the ABC song, for reference). Avoid large crowds or close contact with anyone coughing. Educate yourself using reputable sources. The Health Department has an Emergencey Preparedness Plan in place.  The Office of Emergency Management has one as well. All Health Department personnel are trained, and will be doing their best to handle the situation if there is an outbreak.

A list of definitions is included, as is a table from the CDC, and it's suggestions on how to prevent Corona virus spread. 

Close contact is defined as:

a) being within approximately 6 feet (2 meters) of a COVID-19 case for a prolonged period of time; close contact can occur while caring for, living with, visiting, or sharing a healthcare waiting area or room with a COVID-19 case

– or –

b) having direct contact with infectious secretions of a COVID-19 case (e.g., being coughed on)

Congregate settings are crowded public places where close contact with others may occur, such as shopping centers, movie theaters, stadiums.

Social distancing means remaining out of congregate settings, avoiding mass gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet or 2 meters) from others when possible.

The Following is according to the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Henry and Stark County Health Departments.

While efforts to contain the number of COVID-19 cases will continue, Illinois will also utilize community mitigation strategies. Community mitigation aims to slow the spread of a novel virus in communities using nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) better known as “everyday preventive actions” including staying home when sick, covering coughs and sneezes, frequent handwashing, and routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces and objects. 

In the absence of medications or vaccines, community mitigation measures are the first line of defense against highly transmissible infectious diseases. Preventative actions should be practiced by Illinoisans at all times, but especially as we continue to monitor potential spread of a new virus. 

“The State of Illinois continues to take action to reduce spread of COVID-19 in Illinois and we again want to encourage people to start thinking and preparing now in the event they are not able to go to work, if schools are closed, if public transportation is not available, and how else their lives will be disrupted by this outbreak.”

The Following is from the CDC’s Implementation of Mitigation Strategies for Communities with Local COVID-19 Transmission