Friday, January 27, 2023

Here’s how to find out if you’re a higher risk for coronavirus

(WYDaily file photo)
(WYDaily file photo)

State and local agencies are using social media platforms to keep the public informed about the latest facts regarding the coronavirus (COVID 19).

The coronavirus is a respiratory illness and symptoms such as fever, cough and shortness of breath can appear two to 14 days after exposure.

As of Friday, James City County has 19 positive cases, Williamsburg has four, York County has three and Newport News has one, according to the Virginia Department of Health’s website.

Virginia now has 114 positive cases of the coronavirus with 20 hospitalizations, according to Friday’s update.

The Virginia Department of Emergency Management recently posted several images from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about people who are at a higher risk of getting sick from the coronavirus.

Besides people ages 65 and older, people who live in a nursing home or long-term care facility are also at risk.

According to the CDC’s website, people of any age with the following medical conditions may be at a higher risk for severe illness:

  • Chronic lung disease or asthma
  • Congestive heart failure or coronary artery disease
  • Diabetes
  • Neurologic conditions that weaken ability to cough
  • Weakened immune system
  • Chemotherapy or radiation for cancer, currently or in recent past
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • Chronic kidney disease requiring dialysis
  • Cirrhosis of the liver
  • Lack of spleen or a spleen that doesn’t function correctly
  • Extreme obesity, a body mass index greater than 40
  • People who are pregnant
  • People with HIV

The Peninsula Health District use Facebook to address the call center’s top four frequently asked questions shown below.

I feel sick. What should I do?

  • Call your doctor: If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your health care provider for medical advice.
  • If you are a close contact of someone with COVID-19 or you are a resident in a community where there is ongoing spread of COVID-19 and develop symptoms of COVID-19 such as fever, cough and shortness of breath, call your health care provider and tell them about your symptoms and your exposure. Your health care provider will work with the health department and local hospitals and will decide whether you need to be tested. Keep in mind that there is no treatment for COVID-19 and people who are mildly ill may be able to isolate and care for themselves at home.
  • If you are very sick, get medical attention immediately.
  • If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19, get medical attention immediately. Emergency warning signs include: difficulty breathing or shortness of breath, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion or inability to arouse and bluish lips or face. This list is not all inclusive. Please consult your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning.

Where do I go to get tested?

If you think you should be tested, contact your doctor. They will work with the health department and the hospitals and review your symptoms to determine if you need to be tested.

What should I do about my event?

Per the governor’s order, events larger than 100 people are banned, and the public has been asked to avoid non-essential gatherings of more than 10 people, per federal guidelines. This does not include normal operations at essential services such as manufacturers, distribution centers, airports, bus and train stations, medical facilities, grocery stores, or pharmacies.

What should my business/child care center/restaurant do? Close or stay open?

The Health Department does not have the authority to close businesses. Per the governor’s news conference on March 17, restaurants, fitness centers, and theaters have been mandated to significantly reduce seating capacity to 10 patrons, or close, while encouraged to continue carry-out and takeaway options.

For a list of more frequently asked questions about the coronavirus, visit the CDC’s website.


Julia Marsigliano
Julia Marsigliano
Julia Marsigliano is a multimedia reporter for WYDaily. She covers everything on the Peninsula from local government and law enforcement agencies to family-run businesses and weather updates. Before WYDaily, she covered Hampton and Newport News for WYDaily’s sister publication, HNNDaily before both publications merged in December 2018. Julia was born in Tokyo, Japan and moved to Long Island, New York in 2001. A true New Yorker, she loves pizza, bagels and good Chinese food. Send comments, tips and other tidbits to You can follow her on Twitter at @jmarsigliano

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