Do not panic. Do not fret. The corona virus is here. Just take a deep breath.

So, what do we do? Hmmmmmm. Let’s keep it simple.

Let’s stick to facts. There is new research that is way different that what China put out. The virus is stable in the air about 3 hours, and on a moist surface up to 3 days. So let’s work on not getting sick, outside of the hysterics. We know where the virus attaches now, and we have some ideas coming out about how to treat it. There is no respirator shortage – anywhere in the US. Yes, maybe it will get bad. But we have had far worse with the flu. Did you see a shortage of toilet paper during flu season?

Keep your paws clean. Wash them. Warm water and soap about a 30 count. That will get you to about the 20 seconds you need. If you touch something. Wash those paws again. Please do not touch your face with unwashed hands. We do that – a lot. Some research shows up to 30 times an hour. Put on a pair of purple gloves (nitrile) and you can wash them just like your hands. It will remind you what not to touch.

Clean those surfaces. If the store is out of every type of disinfectant known to man – try a little bleach and water. Lots of good web sites with instructions. Use good web sites, like Mayo Clinic, or John’s Hopkins. Don’t use Uncle Leroy’s Back Water Gator Hole Fuel Cleaning Systems web site. At your home, you need only do it once. Then keep it clean. Keep your shoes by the door, Don’t track stuff everywhere. Use your brain and good advice.

And the news – turn it off. Forget it. They are wrong a great deal. If you want real information – go the the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) web site. Call your doctor. I have time to talk to my patients. Even though it is an hour or so a day right now – it is what we do. If your doctor has no time for you, come see me. We can get you into the practice, and answer lots of questions

If you are sick – please go away. We love ya, but don’t need ya when your sick. Now, part of this problem is that if you contract the disease, you are spewing virus all over the place days before any symptoms. Again, wash your hands. Cover your mouth when you sneeze. Wipe and wash – really, simple stuff.

Again, if you are sick – come see the doctor. Call first, we will set things up; talk to you, go over what we need to do. There is testing. Not hysteric I-need-to-be-tested-every-day stuff. But thoughtful, let’s see what’s going on stuff.

A mask is only helpful if YOU have the Wuhan Virus. Yes, that is the proper name. Viruses have been named that way for over 50 years. It is not racial. Heck, it is not even creative. It is simply that where the virus causes an outbreak, that is where the name comes from. The media just needs to raise heck and feel like they have control. I guess Ebola is upset they were not racist. Or SARS, etc.

Oh, and the elderly couple who bough over 200 jumbo mega huge rolls of toilet paper for themselves. Yes you, with the wild eyes and hysterics. You don’t really need two hundred rolls for the two of you. You want to run and hide – fine. It’s not helpful, but okay. The fear of the unknown is a powerful thing. Maybe you could educate yourself with real info, like at the CDC web site. By the way, how long does it take two constipated people to use 200 mega rolls of toilet paper? To borrow from an old tootsie roll pop commercial, “The World May Never Know.

Be sure to sign up for the Health Shopping Trip I will be holding in March! Learn how to shop for healthy groceries and avoid bad choices and impulse buying. I want everyone to be as healthy as possible, join with a friend and learn something new!