Coronavirus in Virginia Digital Special: How to protect yourself and others; will high school seniors graduate?

Digital Originals

ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — The number of coronavirus cases in Virginia continues to increase. As of Wednesday afternoon, the Virginia Department of Health confirmed 391 COVID-19 cases in Virginia, nine deaths, and 59 hospitalizations.

At a press conference Wedensday, Commonwealth health officials announced the first coronavirus death in the WFXR viewing area in the Danville Pittsylvania Health District. Gov. Roy Cooper of North Carolina also announced the death of a Virginia resident from COVID-19. The individual was traveling through North Carolina.

With the infection and death rate rising throughout the United States, how do you protect yourself and others from infection?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) gives the following tips to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Clean your hands often

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

Avoid close contact

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Put distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.

Stay home if you’re sick

  • Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care.

Cover coughs and sneezes

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
  • Throw used tissues in the trash.
  • Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

Clean and disinfect

  • Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
  • If surfaces are dirty, clean them: Use detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.

High School Graduation

Schools will not return to session this academic year. Will high school seniors repeat this semester or graduate on time?

Virginia Superintendent of Public Instruction James Lane said this week that high school seniors in the following categories will graduate on time:

  • Seniors currently enrolled in a course for which they need a standard or verified credit in order to graduate (verified credits are earned by passing a required course and also passing the associated Standards of Learning test);
  • Seniors who have successfully completed a course required for graduation, but have not earned the associated verified credit; and
  • Seniors who have not passed a required student-selected SOL test.

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