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To help stop a pandemic, stay home

March 17, 2020

Confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Delaware have been limited, but viruses travel fast. People visit our region, and anyone who has recently attended a large gathering or passed through an airport risks having been exposed. Officials have tried to limit its spread, but COVID-19 is here, and its threat is serious.

Scientists say it’s inevitable many people will become ill as the number of cases rises to a peak. They also say the best way to reduce the number of cases – or flatten the rising curve – is for everyone to lower the chance they will get sick by staying away from other people.

That means practicing social distancing – something every one of us can do. 

We can all help battle this disease and end this illness by hunkering down and keeping to ourselves. 

Officials are closing schools not because a child has tested positive for COVID-19, but because the best way to stop the virus – and stop children from getting sick – is to keep them home, away from people who may have been exposed. 

Although Ohio, Illinois, Massachusetts and Puerto Rico have already closed bars and restaurants, we don’t have to wait for government to act. In the past, harsh, government-ordered measures have not been as effective as campaigns that encourage everyone who can to stay home – and if we have to go out, to stay at least 6 feet from everyone else. 

Not all of us can stay home. But everyone who can work from home should. Those who must work among others should avoid close contact and frequently wipe down communal spaces.

We should all avoid social gatherings – no sleepovers for kids out of school and no gatherings with colleagues after work.
It’s not going to be fun. But it’s critical to slow this pandemic, and every one of us has the power to play a role. The flatter we can make this curve, the faster life – and our economy – can get back to health.

At this point, we are all in this together – and the more we can stay apart, the better.

 

  • Editorials are considered by the editorial board and written by Dennis Forney, publisher emeritus, and Laura Ritter, news editor, with occasional contributions from other board members: Trish Vernon, CoPublisher and Editor; Dave Frederick, sports editor emeritus; Jen Ellingsworth, associate editor; Nick Roth, sports editor; and Chris Rausch, CoPublisher and General Manager.