Good news: you probably won’t contract the coronavirus

While the world worries about the expansion of the coronavirus, officials at Edmonds Community College have announced that there is no reason to panic. The global epidemic is under control in our area. While the death toll continues to climb past 900, the number of infected people is just above 40,000.

The coronavirus appeared in mid-December, 2019. It can be traced back to the Huanan Seafood Market located in Wuhan, China. This market sells meat, wild animals, and live fish. The epidemic has spread rapidly due to large-scale migrations that traditionally occur during Lunar New Year celebrations.

Since arriving in the US on January 30, authorities have declared two people infected that are closer than 15 miles from Edmonds Community College. Another known case has been identified at the University of Washington. As a result, students begin to worry. Do they need to take this health crisis seriously, do they need to change their habits?

“People need to pay attention, but you are much more at risk of getting the normal flu or a cold,” said Terrie Glazewski, a nurse and faculty member in the college’s allied health department. She is confident that the local risk remains small.

Maria Pierce, head of marketing and public communication at EdCC, says it’s important to stay up-to-date with the news and websites that frequently update their information regarding the coronavirus. “The college is safe and multiple measures are and will be taken to protect the community of EdCC,” said Pierce.

The risk in Snohomish County and in the US is low, and habitants shouldn’t be worried as long as they continue preventative measures such as washing their hands.

Jade Jeter-Hill, EdCC’s director of Safety, Security, and Emergency Preparedness, explains that the college works closely with government institutions. Decisions are made according to what these meetings cover. “Your campus, here, works very closely with professionals in the field around all matter of threats to the campus. We work with the health district, we work with our police department, we work with our fire department,” confirmed Jeter-Hill.

Emotional concerns outweigh health concerns for Chinese international students attending Edmonds Community College. What is going to happen to their family in China? Are they safe? Although threats of this virus are heightened around the world, the threat fortunately isn’t as prominent in the United States.

The ongoing health crisis in China is significant. Thousands of citizens are isolated from the rest of the world. Safety precautions have been taken across the entire country in order to avoid further spread of the virus. “Police cars block cities, airplane flights are canceled, and even movie theaters are shut down,” explains Chinese student Gary Xuan, who comes from Kunming, Yunnan, China. In Yunnan, more than 60 people are infected and it continues to grow.

As a result of the outbreak, Xuan expresses is apprehensive about people leaving China. “I’m strongly worried about it and for my family, I keep contact with them every day.”  For Xuan, the most important thing is to maintain a sense of hope and support the Chinese population.

The coronavirus has fueled a rise in anti-Chinese sentiment, which has possibly spread across the US more than the virus itself has.

“The virus is an enemy of all the world,” declares Gary. “Have empathy for the people who are suffering right now.”  It is essential to support people around us, from near and far who are touched by the coronavirus. They need to know that people are supporting them.