DAVENPORT, Iowa — With more than 82,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus reported worldwide, health leaders in the Quad Cities say they're prepared to handle any possible cases locally.
There are currently no confirmed cases of the disease in either Iowa or Illinois, so while the risk remains low for contracting coronavirus here in the Quad Cities, Genesis Health System has a plan.
"We have multiple, what we call, negative air flow rooms, or isolation rooms in our hospitals," Genesis Infection Prevention Coordinator Lisa Caffery says. "We can take patients and provide care for them. We will working closely with the public health department in both states to determine whether the patient can stay at our hospital or if they need to be transferred to another level of care."
Caffery says many cases of coronavirus are being treated at patients' homes, like the 12 Iowans being monitored for the coronavirus, so the risk is low for catching the virus locally.
As for protecting yourself from coronavirus, it's similar to flu prevention -- stay home if you're sick, wash your hands, cover your coughs and keep your hands away from your face.
Caffery says she understands why people are concerned about the coronavirus, given the media coverage of thousands of cases around the world.
"(The coronavirus) is causing severe illness. The symptoms are fever, cough, shortness of breath, some aches -- like you're getting the cold or flu," she says.
She hopes that people stay informed and worry less.
"Don't let it consume you and cause you to be so afraid because people are working hard to protect the community and the population," Caffery says.