Parkersburg, WV March 13, 2020: To slow the spread of COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends several actions that local communities should take. Although it will not prevent the spread of COVID-19, some commonsense restrictions may limit the number of cases and alleviate the burden on health care facilities.

COVID-19 appears to be more severe to the elderly and those with compromised immune systems and other chronic health conditions. These individuals should consider avoiding non-essential public places and limit travel whenever possible. Many elder care facilities have started to limit visitation to protect their population.

We recommend communities cancel mass gatherings or special events such as sporting events, large religious gatherings, fairs and festivals.

Enclosed areas where people are in close proximity increases the chance for exposure. Those that have a fever, cough, sneezing, difficulty breathing or show other respiratory symptoms should be considerate and stay home.

If your symptoms progress, consider calling your healthcare provider for directions. While it is important to limit exposure, it is vital to check on other members of your community and offer help by providing groceries, meals, supplies and frequent communication.

Worksites should consider whether staff can telework, especially those at increased risk of serious illness. Non-essential travel and large work-related gatherings should be limited to reduce the exposure to COVID-19.

You can find more information at, (COVID banner) or (COVID-19 tab). Operators are available 24/7 at the toll-free West Virginia Coronavirus hotline at 1-800-887-4304 to provide accurate information about COVID-19, the risk to the public, and the state’s response.