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Ordinarily, taking a deep breath in March is exhilarating. Now we might be afraid of the air.  Paul Goldfinger photo ©  Asbury Park, NJ

 

By Paul Goldfinger, MD  Editor@Blogfinger.

  CDC:     “A person in California who was not exposed to anyone known to be infected with the coronavirus and had not traveled to countries in which the virus is circulating has tested positive for the infection. This was the first case of “community spread”

“Community spread” means spread of an illness for which the source of infection is unknown. (CDC)

“There is a good chance there already are many people infected in this country and that the virus is circulating undetected—–community spread.    It points to the need for expanded surveillance so we know how many more are out there and how to respond.” For that we need more testing.

The disease is capable of spreading through human-to-human contact, droplets carried through sneezing and coughing, and germs left on inanimate objects.  Those are the only ways…

Click on comments below for a discussion of the 6 foot rule of social separation.

I have noticed that our neighborhood here in Florida contains only a few people walking, biking or just riding around in golf carts. I guess everyone else is in the house or away in their cars.

Eileen and I took a walk at sunset last night, when the air and sky were beautiful, and we passed a window where about 6 people were arranged around a table, I think playing cards.  That’s not a good idea even if they all know each other.

IMG_3579

Palm Drive, Ft, Myers.  Almost everyone is inside.  You can walk here- and take deep breaths—-it is safe. Good air supply.   Eileen Goldfinger photo. 3/22/20

A relative of mine, living at a winter resort on the Florida east coast, admitted that he meets his friends in the morning and they sit and talk by the pool or they walk together without worrying about “community spread/separation.”  He said that his friends never go anywhere and only associate with those in the group, and that is safe.

But, or course this is a fantasy, because you never know who has touched whom or what. And there is the unexpected:  a plumber shows up, or a relative arrives to spend a week.   I stopped by a vegetable stand this morning, squeezed a few tomatoes and then bought 3.

But it was after I got home that I realized that others must have also squeezed those tomatoes. I washed my hands and Eileen washes tomatoes and anything with skin, with soap and water.

So I suspect, without doing any research, just speculating, that some people think that they won’t catch it if they are surrounded only by people they know.

I also suspect, the other side of the coin, that some are uncertain about catching the bug just by being outdoors and breathing air.  Even “fresh air” may be feared in this setting.   And that fear may have some rationale, but only if there is human to human contact  involving you  while you are out and about.

If you walk on a path where a group has just gone before, the only way that the group could infect you would be if someone there had the bug and coughed or sneezed into the air right before you walked into that germ cloud.   The virus droplets could linger in the air for awhile and then fall to the ground or land on some surface where it could survive for a short time, which could be hours.

So keep away from others outdoors, and if there is coughing or sneezing, separate yourself. Don’t let anyone breathe into your face.

But don’t fret about going outside and taking a walk. Just be careful. Keep your distanced—the 6 foot rule.   Breathe deep,”  says Air Supply:

 

AIR SUPPLY:

Even the nights are better
Now that we’re here together
Even the nights are better
Since I found you, oh

 

 

 

 

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