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Lake County, Ohio - EMA

Pandemic

Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

COVID-19 is a respiratory disease caused by SARS-CoV-2, a new coronavirus discovered in 2019. The virus is thought to spread mainly from person to person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. Some people who are infected may not have symptoms. For people who have symptoms, illness can range from mild to severe. Adults 65 years and older and people of any age with underlying medical conditions are at higher risk for severe illness.

For more information visit:

Lake County General Health District

Ohio Department of Health

Prevention Tips

  • Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid close contact with people outside your home. Stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from others.
  • Wear a mask in public, even if you don’t feel sick. The make cover will help protect others in case you are infected.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue or the inside of your elbow. Throw used tissues in the trash and then wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
  • Stay home if you have symptoms such as fever, cough, shortness of breath.
  • Seek emergency medical care if you develop severe symptoms, such as trouble breathing, chest pain, new confusion, inability to wake or stay awake, or bluish lips or face.

    Other Past Pandemics

    Pandemic Flu

    Scientists around the globe continue to warn the public about the risk of a potential pandemic influenza outbreak, which typically strikes three to four times a century. Pandemic flu is caused by a strain of flu virus that is capable of producing severe disease and spreading rapidly person-to-person worldwide. Unlike the seasonal flu, a pandemic flu virus poses a novel threat. Since humans have no previously developed immunity against pandemic flu, this virus strain puts most people at high risk of infection. This could result in a large percentage of the world's population being infected by a rapidly spreading virus in a very short period of time. Though considerable progress has been made in the last few years, much more must be done to prepare for a pandemic.

    Experts predict a severe pandemic flu outbreak could result in up to 1.9 million deaths in the United States, approximately 9.9 million Americans needing to be hospitalized, and an economic recession with losses of over $680 billion to the U.S. Gross Domestic Product.

    H1N1

    The U.S. Public Health Emergency for 2009 H1N1 Influenza expired on June 23, 2010. On August 10, 2010, the World Health Organization International Health Regulations (IHR) Emergency Committee declared an end to the 2009 H1N1 pandemic globally. For information about CDC’s response to the 2009 H1N1 pandemic, visit The 2009 H1N1 Pandemic: Summary Highlights, April 2009-April 2010.  Internationally, 2009 H1N1 viruses and seasonal influenza viruses are co-circulating in many parts of the world.  It is likely that the 2009 H1N1 virus will continue to spread for years to come, like a regular  seasonal influenza virus.

    Avian Influenza (Bird Flu)

    Avian influenza virus usually refers to influenza A viruses found chiefly in birds, but infections can occur in humans. The risk is generally low to most people, because the viruses do not usually infect humans. However, confirmed cases of human infection have been reported since 1997.

    Although avian influenza A viruses usually do not infect humans, rare cases of human infection with avian influenza A viruses have been reported. Most human infections with avian influenza A viruses have occurred following direct contact with infected poultry. Human clinical illness from infection with avian influenza A viruses has ranged from eye infections (conjunctivitis) to severe respiratory disease (pneumonia) to death.

    Since November 2003, nearly 400 cases of human infection with highly pathogenic avian influenza A (H5N1) viruses have been reported by more than a dozen countries in Asia, Africa, the Pacific, Europe and the Near East. Highly pathogenic avian influenza A (H5N1) viruses have never been detected among wild birds, domestic poultry, or people in the United States.

    Pandemic Information You Can Use