The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention has issued the following notice for school communities in Maine:
To help answer questions and address concerns that might arise within your school communities, the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention (Maine CDC) is providing information about the recent coronavirus outbreak that originated in central China. It’s important to note Maine has no confirmed or suspected cases associated with the 2019 novel coronavirus. The 2019 novel coronavirus was first identified in individuals who had visited a large animal market in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. On December 31, 2019, Chinese health authorities officially notified the World Health Organization of the outbreak. By mid-January, cases had been reported in other countries, including five in the United States as of January 27, 2020. Students or staff who recently returned from central China who have respiratory symptoms or fever should inform their health care provider about their travel history. Health care providers should notify Maine CDC at 1-800-821-5821 and screen for routine respiratory illnesses such as influenza and respiratory syncytial virus. Maine CDC staff have been working closely with public health officials from the federal government and other states since the 2019 novel coronavirus was first identified in China. Maine CDC continues to offer guidance to the state’s health care community as the global situation evolves. As part of that effort, Maine CDC created and regularly updates a webpage with information about the 2019 novel coronavirus. Visit the webpage at: www.maine.gov/dhhs/coronavirus . Additionally, the attached fact sheet (PDF) provides answers to common questions about the 2019 novel coronavirus. Please distribute it as meets your needs. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention maintain that the immediate risk of contracting this novel virus remains low in the United States. There are currently advisories for travel to China, and airport screening for individuals returning from the affected area to provide education and medical support. The best preventive measures are to wash hands thoroughly with soap and water, cover your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, and stay home when you feel sick.
Emily Poland, MPH, RN
School Nurse Consultant
Team Leader, Coordinated School Health
Maine Department of Education
Phone: (207) 592-0387