COVID-19 cases continues to rise in the wintertime


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As the temperature drops, it is crucial to follow COVID-19 protocols to prevent any possibility of contracting the virus.

As winter approaches, we have an increased chance of being infected by COVID-19 or other respiratory illnesses.
According to the Merck Manual Consumer Version, respiratory illnesses affect the respiratory system, which includes the nose, mouth, throat and voice, and continues through the airways of the lungs in the human body. They are very common in the winter because the weather gets cooler and people are gathered inside more.
“Typically the wintertime is the time that we see higher levels of respiratory infectious disease spread, common colds, influenza they’re always higher in the winter,” said Biology Professor Julie Oliver. “People are in more close contact.”
College Nurse Fran Koscheski said the flu and COVID-19 are very contagious and it’s important to get the flu shot this year.
“The vaccine is a great way to keep healthy during the winter months,” said Koscheski. “People are indoors more and they are gathering for the holidays and you could be easily exposed to both the flu and COVID this winter.”
Oliver said social gatherings should be small for the holiday season and should only be with the people you live with.
“Every time you interact with a new person, you’re also interacting with all the people they’ve interacted with,” said Oliver. “You’re just increasing your risk every time you’re around a lot of other people.”
College Nurse Michelle Barkley said the precautions for COVID-19 will continue to be the same along with people being more cautious.
“Practicing healthy behavior, so you can stay healthy as you can during the winter,” said Barkley. “I think if you do have to be confined in a space with people, what might be a good idea is to get some type of a house filter.”
Koscheski said the winter season is the season that people will be doing a lot of online shopping.
“The thing is they’re moving indoors because the weather is cooler, so when you’re indoors, there is more risk of exposure,” said Koscheski.
Koscheski said grocery stores are becoming strict regarding face masks and from people touching and sneezing ahead of you as well as surface tops.
“The main key is handwashing,” said Koscheski. “If you’ve been out, you’ve got to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds, use the hand sanitizer if you’re not near soap and water, use the antibacterial wipes just to keep your hands clean, try not to touch your face.”
Oliver said she won’t be traveling anywhere for the upcoming holiday season.
“As soon as we have a school break, I travel somewhere in the world, I’m gonna miss that,” said Oliver. “We won’t be having any big gatherings, it’ll be very quiet.”
The increase of COVID-19 infection rate is all over the world, Koscheski said.
“Hopefully with the vaccine, things will improve,” said Koscheski. “We’ll be able to get back on campus.”