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Health Advisory for Coronavirus from the Belmont Health Department; Update #1

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Health Advisory for Coronavirus  

January 31, 2020

The Belmont Health Department is sharing information with the Belmont Public Schools to help keep it informed about a respiratory illness caused by a new coronavirus – named “2019 nCov” – that was first detected in Wuhan, China and continues to spread.

The Belmont Health Department is monitoring the latest information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH).  There are NO confirmed cases of “2019 nCov” in Massachusetts.  At this time, NO special measures are recommended for local public health departments or schools.  As this situation is evolving, if any special instructions are provided, the Belmont Health Department will communicate them to the community.

The Belmont Health Department, along with Belmont Public School nurses, track illnesses in schools and participates regularly in CDC and MDPH conference calls to monitor emerging information.  

The latest nationwide updates on this evolving situation can be found from the CDC at: CDC on 2019 Novel Coronavirus

Local information from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health can be found at:

Information on the Outbreak of 2019 Novel Coronavirus 2019 (updated January 30, 2020)

The Belmont Health Department will post important local advisories to the Town of Belmont’s website at: Town of Belmont

Respiratory Illness Prevention

Because it is cold and flu season, it is important to remind people of the possible risk of exposure to respiratory illnesses including influenza.  Residents are encouraged to obtain a flu shot for their healthcare providers if they have not yet received one.  Flu severity in Massachusetts has increased from moderate to high, according to the MDPH flu activity report: 2019-2020 Season - Weekly Flu Reports

The following precautionary actions will help prevent respiratory viruses, including seasonal influenza and Coronavirus:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds.  If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Travelers’ Health

CDC is providing updates for travelers at: Novel Coronavirus Information for Travelers

As of January 28, 2020, the CDC advises individuals who have traveled to China in the last 14 days and experience a fever, cough or have difficulty breathing to:

  • Seek medical care immediately
  • Call ahead before going to see a doctor or to an emergency room
  • Tell them your symptoms and that you were in China


Please contact you healthcare provider for all medical emergencies and health related concerns.  All other questions may be directed to the Belmont Health Department at (617) 993-2720.