You Asked, We Answered: How is COVID-19 Affecting the Granite State? | New Hampshire Public Radio

You Asked, We Answered: How is COVID-19 Affecting the Granite State?

Mar 19, 2020

Some members of NHPR's content team meets virtually to talk COVID-19 coverage

As the numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases rise in New Hampshire, we've heard from a lot of listeners.

As a station, we've tried our best to keep pace with the breaking news of the virus, including a live coronavirus blog, a story on finding connection while social distancing, and reporting on how schools are responding to the outbreak.

But what's it been like for our reporters during this time? 

Jason Moon, NHPR's health reporter, shares his experiences and answers listener questions about the virus that is turning our lives upside down.   

You can still submit your questions about COVID-19 here.

I assume that being outdoors while following social distancing (walking, riding a bike or other solo activities in the outdoors) would still be considered actions that are beneficial for both physical and mental health. Is there any reason to not promote outdoor activity?

- Marsha Rich, Chichester

"I think she's right. Getting outdoors is going to be key to a lot of our mental health, and as long as you're not in close contact with a group of people, you're all set to go outside. That's exactly what I'm doing," said Moon.

What opportunities are there to volunteer or otherwise support efforts to help those most at risk of COVID-19 or the effects of related organizational shutdowns? E.g. are there organized efforts to help high-risk groups safely access supplies or to ensure children at home without access to schools' free and reduced lunches have access to nutritious meals?

- Grace Palmer, Concord

So far, some communities are putting together informal, collaborative online spreadsheets where community members can list needs or offer help, like grocery trips or childcare support.

Moon also suggests connecting with local school districts to ask how you can help. For instance, in some cases, local bus drivers and sherriff's offices have stepped in to deliver meals to kids no longer physically attending school.

What is the difference between being in isolation vs. self quarantine?

- Mike H., Hampstead

Self-isolation means a person has symptoms and has tested positive or very likely has COVID-19, and isolates from others to avoid transmitting it to others.

Self-quarantine means a person may have been exposed to a sick person. That person would quarantine and monitor themselves for symptoms, in case they are a carrier.

Social distancing means staying home and limiting contact with others as much as possible to help prevent community transmission of COVID-19.

If you have to go out for work or an essential errand, what are best practices to avoid bringing the virus inside once you return home?

 

"It's really hard, but when you come in the door, the very first thing you should do is go to the bathroom and wash your hands. Don't touch anything. Don't put your keys down, put your coat on the rack. Go straight to the bathroom and watch your hands," said Moon.

 

"Washing your clothes? I don't think it's a bad idea... if you're, say, a retail worker or some other profession where you are having lots of contact with other people."