Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly Says Health Officials Are Preparing For Coronavirus

Mar 4, 2020

Kansas Governor Laura Kelly says health officials are preparing for coronavirus, because it’s likely only a matter of time until it shows up in the state.

Kansas has a laboratory certified to test up to 60 samples a day for coronavirus. That means the results take only a few hours. Most people who get the illness have mild symptoms.

Meanwhile, Kelly urges Kansans to take steps that can help prevent the spread illnesses like coronavirus or the flu.

“Wash your hands. Cough into your sleeve. Avoid touching your eyes and your mouth. It sounds simple, and it is. But it’s also effective,” she said.

Kansas has no confirmed cases of coronavirus but health officials are monitoring more than a dozen people who recently traveled back from areas where the virus is widespread.

With more cases of the virus being confirmed in the U.S., Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) Secretary Lee Norman says state officials have been preparing for it to come to Kansas.

“I feel like we’ve gotten a good handle on the processes involved. We’re stood up, in terms of our incident command. There’s not been any dramatic surprises,” Norman said.

According to a press release issued Tuesday, the KDHE launched an online resource center, where Kansans can learn more about COVID-19, the novel coronavirus, get answers to commonly asked questions about the virus and review other helpful information.

The site is part of KDHE’s ongoing efforts to inform Kansans about the latest COVID-19 news and correct misinformation about the virus.

Norman said the best thing Kansans can do is be informed.

“COVID-19 is a new virus and, as a result, many people have questions about it and how to keep their families safe,” he said. “The COVID-19 resource center will provide a centralized location for Kansans to go to learn the most up-to-date information.”

The site contains detailed information, answers to frequently asked questions and updated videos from Norman. Information will also be shared on KDHE’s social media channels.

“KDHE is working closely with local and federal authorities to ensure that every effort is made to keep Kansans safe and healthy,” Norman said.

The 2019 novel coronavirus infections were initially diagnosed in Wuhan City, China and have now been reported in 60 locations internationally, including cases in the U.S.

If you have recently traveled to areas including China, Iran, Italy, Japan and South Korea and have developed fever with lower respiratory symptoms, including cough and shortness of breath, within 14 days of your travel or have had contact with someone with a laboratory-confirmed case of COVID-19, stay home and call your healthcare provider.

For more information about COVID-19, visit KDHE’s website at kdheks.gov/coronavirus and cdc.gov/coronavirus.