Editorial: Take COVID-19 Seriously

How many people are too many? How many people need to get sick? How many people need to die? How many people in our county need to suffer before everyone starts taking COVID-19 seriously?
The numbers reported in today’s paper, which are accurate of December 15th, should be quite disturbing. As of December 15th, we have had 1,950 reported cumulative cases of COVID-19. Nearly 15 percent of our population who have tested for COVID-19 have tested positive. In the last two weeks, 344 new cases have been reported, and the week ending December 12th was the highest number of cases reported yet. Our county has lost 54 people, who have died from COVID-19. By the time, this paper hits the streets on Monday, we will likely have more than 2,000 reported cases based on the current trend.
Since March 20, when Dillon County had its first reported case, we all knew what we needed to do to stop the spread of COVID-19, and if we didn’t, by now, we should have all been schooled on what it takes to try to avoid the virus.
Here are just a few things that we can all do to try to avoid contracting and spreading the virus:
• Wear a mask, and wear it properly. You are not really wearing your mask if your nose is sticking out or if you are wearing it around your chin.
• Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, and if soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer.
• Don’t touch your eyes, nose, mouth, or face with unwashed hands.
• Wipe your phone, your keys, and other places and things you touch daily such as doorknobs, telephones, light switches, and other frequently touched surfaces.
• Do not share eating utensils or food.
• Socially distance yourself from other people by at least six feet, and stay out of crowded areas.
• If you plan to travel, attend a gathering including family Christmas functions, or plan to socialize with others in any way, it is recommended that you get a COVID-19 test.
Nobody enjoys taking these precautions, and taking these types of precautions can be tiresome and inconvenient, but this is not the time to get lax in what we must do to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Yes, a vaccine is coming, but it will be a while before most of the general public will have the opportunity to get a vaccine so we must all bear down and do our part to keep our community safe and to keep our community well. We don’t need to lose or sicken another person with COVID-19. We must all do our part to stop the spread.

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