It seems like every day, the number of headlines about Coronavirus increases. Those headlines are now getting closer to home. 

We’ve seen the headlines about San Antonio and Seattle; and as much as I wanted to really worry about COVID-19, I didn’t see much of a reason to. 

What made me stop and think was a news story that came out regarding Texas A&M.

Texas A&M announced their guidelines for dealing with the novel coronavirus. That includes West Texas A&M, and the campus downtown.

I’m not saying the sky is falling, but knowing that WT has guidelines for dealing with the virus makes me think that the novel coronavirus being in the panhandle isn’t out of the question at some point. 

Their guidelines include things like self-quarantine if you are exhibiting flu like symptoms; in an off-campus residence, of course. Also, calling ahead to be pre-screened so that health care professionals can be prepared when a patient arrives. 

Students are being urged to return home from studies abroad. If they’re coming back from places like China, Iran, Italy, or South Korea then they are to self-isolate for 14 days before going back to the campus. 

If I had to look for a silver lining in all of the coronavirus news I’ve been ingesting, I would have to say that it's the fact that the fatality rate is relatively low at this time. It’s not an automatic death sentence.

Not much of a silver lining.

For now, I guess the best we can do is just stay aware and keep washing our hands. In fact, I got an email today here at the office reminding me to wash my hands and to use the hand sanitizer station at the front of the building. 

Might be time to start paying attention.