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UIC Nursing faculty offer advice amid coronavirus scare

The UIC leadership continues to monitor the activity of the 2019 novel coronavirus, and in an update to the campus community on Wednesday said the general health risk continues to be low.

There have been five confirmed cases in the U.S., including one in Illinois, that are all related to travel from Hubei Province, China, primarily the city of Wuhan. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended on Tuesday that travelers avoid all nonessential travel to China.

UIC College of Nursing faculty members and nurse practitioners Rebecca Singer, DNP ’18, RN, and Charles Yingling, DNP ’12, MS ’05, FNP-BC, FAANP, offer the following tips:

Stay calm

“At this point, the chances of contracting this virus are slim,” says Singer, a clinical assistant professor. “Panic never prevents the spread of disease.”

Get a flu vaccine every year

“You’re much more likely to come into contact with influenza than the Wuhan coronavirus,” says Yingling, clinical assistant professor and interim dean for practice and partnerships.

Practice good hygiene

Wash your hands frequently and cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough. Yingling says soap and water is best for hand washing, but hand sanitizer is effective when it’s not available.

Use your sick days

If you have a fever, do not go to work or school. “Nobody wins when sick people come to work,” Yingling says.

Consult your healthcare provider

Singer says if you have concerns, call your healthcare provider.