Our best defense is our collective action
Posted on Thursday, Mar. 12, 2020 at 1:11 pm
As the prevalence of coronavirus (COVID-19) around the world increases, we are using the best information we have to take proactive steps to protect the health of our community. We know that our recommendations have a tremendous impact on peoples’ lives, but this is a critical moment to slow the spread of this disease in our community. The sooner we slow transmission, the more cases we can prevent.
We reproduced a CDC graphic (at right) to show you how your actions now—like social distancing and minimizing travel—can have a major impact in delaying the epidemic. Your actions also help us reduce the total number of people who get sick.
We are using prevention principles that are proven and reliable to slow the spread of disease and protect those who are most vulnerable.
A look back at history can teach us about community spread. During the 1918 influenza pandemic, the city of Philadelphia allowed public gatherings, such as a World War 1 victory parade, and didn’t enact closures until the virus had spread. By contrast, St. Louis enacted measures to contain the spread just two days after the first case was identified, and in doing so slowed the spread of the flu and lowered the mortality rate.
We can learn from these examples and ensure history does not repeat itself. We know that our recommendations may have a huge impact your life, but we are asking you to come together to ensure that we support our community members, particularly those who are most vulnerable.
We will continue to evaluate the situation day-by-day and keep everyone up to date about any changes to our recommendations.
We’re in this together, and we will get through it together.