Urging calm amid concern about coronavirus

ME (WABI)- Three months ago, the biggest national stories were President Trump's impeachment trials and Brexit.

Now, coronavirus consumes the headlines.

As Joy Hollowell reports, staying informed could be the key to staying healthy.
<"To the people of Maine, I would say that this is a time to prepare and to protect, but not to panic." Those words from Senator Susan Collins this week.

As COVID-19 cases are confirmed in Maine, many are rushing to grocery stories to stock up on supplies. Toilet paper is such a hot commodity, many businesses are putting a limit on how many, customers can buy at one time.

"This COVID-19 literally and figuratively came out of nowhere," says University of Maine Finance Professor Pankaj Agarrwal. "And that is the classic scenario that stops a bull market or a market from moving higher."

Record drops on Wall Street. enough to rattle even the most seasoned financial experts.

"The supply and disruption that the COVID-19 seems to be bringing about is unprecendented in modern economic history," says Agarrwal.

Nonetheless, the recommendation is that those with long term investments, stay put for now. History shows stocks will rebound in time.

"It may be that 40% of 50% of a workforce can be absent at any time," says Dr. Noah Nesin, Chief Medical Officer for Penobscot Comunity Healthcare.

Businesses in Maine should be preparing for the ripple effect from the virus.

"As schools close, as people get the disease or are exposed to the disease and are quarinteened or isolated," says Nesin.

No doubt, you've heard the buzz word- social distancing.

"And that includes reducing the number of people who gather together, keeping three foot distances apart," explains Nesin.

Governor Mills is recommending any gatherings of more than 250 people be postponed.

The TSA now allowing passengers to bring liquid hand sanitizer containers up to 12 ounces in carry-ons. And many airlines allowing a one time chance to change flights for free, depending on the date of travel.

Joy Hollowell stand-up"
While stores are rushing to keep these in stock, the c-d-c says washing hands with soap and water is actually more effective. why? santizers don't eliminate all types of germs. also, there's a tendancy to not use eough or not wait until its fulled dried, both of which could lessen the potency.

If soap and water aren't available, the recommendation is a sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

Here are some other things to keep in mind-

According to the CDC, the COVID-19 virus has not been detected in drinking water. Nor can it be spread through the use of pools and or hot tubs. And when it comes to your pets, there is no evidence to date that they are vulnerable to the virus.