Editor's note: The Cap Times staff is working to provide answers to readers’ questions about coronavirus so they can make sound decisions about their health and daily lives. Staff will update this document as new information becomes available and as we're able to answer more of your questions. Find a form at the bottom of this article to submit questions of your own.
What are the symptoms besides a fever and cough?
According to the World Health Organization, people with COVID-19 will experience fever, tiredness and a dry cough. Some may have aches and pains, nasal congestion, a runny nose, sore throat or diarrhea. Symptoms are mild and begin gradually.
Some people who become infected will not develop any symptoms, according to the World Health Organization. About 80% of people will recover from the disease without needing special treatment. Around 1 in 6 people who get COVID-19 will become seriously ill and develop difficulty breathing.
Older people and those with underlying medical problems, such as high blood pressure, heart problems or diabetes, are more likely to develop serious illnesses. People with fever, cough and difficulty breathing should seek medical attention.
What should you do if you’re sick?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has published a helpful set of steps that include:
• Stay home and recuperate. Avoid public places and public transportation.
• Call ahead if you’re planning to visit your doctor. Clinics and offices may have special precautions in place to avoid contact.
• Wash your hands, clean surfaces and monitor symptoms.
Can dogs and other pets get it and then transmit it?
No. There is no evidence that companion animals or pets such as cats and dogs have been infected or could spread the virus that causes COVID-19, according to the World Health Organization.
What should I do if someone I live with begins to experience symptoms associated with coronavirus?
Most people who get COVID-19 will be able to recover at home. CDC has directions for people who are recovering at home and their caregivers:
• Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
• Use a separate room and bathroom for sick household members, if possible.
• Clean hands regularly by handwashing with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
• Provide your sick household member with clean disposable face masks to wear at home, if available, to help prevent spreading COVID-19 to others.
• Clean the sick room and bathroom, as needed, to avoid unnecessary contact with the sick person.
• Avoid sharing personal items like utensils, food and drinks.
What are treatment options for COVID-19?
Some western, traditional or home remedies may alleviate symptoms of COVID-19, but there is no evidence that current medicine can prevent or cure the disease, according to the World Health Organization.
COVID-19 is caused by a virus, so antibiotics do not work. There is no vaccine and no specific antiviral medicine to prevent or treat COVID-19. Those affected should receive care to relieve symptoms, and people with serious illness should be hospitalized.
Possible vaccines and some specific drug treatments are under investigation, according to the World Health Organization.
The most effective ways to protect yourself and others against COVID-19 are to frequently clean your hands, cover your cough with the bend of elbow or tissue, and maintain a distance of at least three feet from people who are coughing or sneezing.
Should I even be going out?
Public Health Madison & Dane County says in its coronavirus recommendations that “people at higher risk for severe illness should stay home and away from large groups as much as possible. This includes public places with lots of people and large gatherings where there will be close contact with others.” People at higher risk include those 60 and older, those with weakened immune systems and people with underlying health conditions including heart disease, lung disease, or diabetes.
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services ”recommends that all non-essential gatherings of 250 or more people be canceled or postponed statewide to help protect Wisconsinites from the spread of COVID-19, particularly those who are most vulnerable to infection and severe disease. DHS supports the decisions of any event organizers that elect to cancel or postpone events with less than 250 attendees in order to protect their communities."
Many events have been canceled or scaled back. The Cap Times staff will update this story with announcements.
What is the Madison School District’s planning in response to the coronavirus?
On Friday, Gov. Tony Evers ordered public and private schools across the state to close effective Wednesday, March 18, until Monday, April 6, at the earliest.
MMSD is updating information here: madison.k12.wi.us/coronavirus-covid-19-information-and-updates.
What is UW-Madison’s policy?
As of spring break, which officially starts Monday, March 16, UW-Madison is suspending in-person classes. Students are encouraged to follow instructions from professors and other instructors in how to complete coursework remotely. Students who live in University Housing are asked to remove essential belongings and plan to live at their permanent residences until April 10, at the earliest. All campus events scheduled until April 10 have been canceled.
Information is updated here: covid19.wisc.edu
What is Edgewood College’s policy?
Edgewood will suspend face-to-face classes and keep its dormitories closed effective March 23 through Sunday, April 5 at the earliest. Updates posted here: edgewood.edu/covid-19
What is Madison College’s policy?
MATC campuses remain open as of Thursday, but the school is “reviewing guidance provided by the CDC, WI Dept. of Health Services, and U.S. Dept. of Education as it relates to teaching and learning and our associated operations.” Updates are posted here: madisoncollege.edu/coronavirus
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
Broadly, health officials have urged “social distancing,” which includes avoiding large gatherings. While this restriction particularly applies to people in higher-risk categories, such as those over 60 or with underlying health conditions, even younger, healthier people can catch and transmit the disease to vulnerable populations.
Several touring acts have canceled shows in Madison. In addition, local venues have announced they are taking additional precautions.
What is the status at Overture?
Overture Center is closed at least until April 10. It canceled the run of the national tour of "Wicked" with hopes to reschedule in the future. Madison Opera's "Orpheus in the Underworld," set for April 17 and 19, is canceled. Currently the "My Fair Lady" tour is set to open April 21.
What is the status at FPC venues like the Majestic and the Sylvee?
We are updating a story about the status of various Madison events. Find that HERE.
Is the Wisconsin Film Festival still on?
The Film Festival was canceled late Friday afternoon.
What is the status of WIAA high school tournaments?
The state boys and girls basketball tournaments have been canceled.
What is the status of UW sports?
All remaining winter and spring college sports events have been canceled.
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