The initial batch of tests for the novel coronavirus in Maine have come back negative.
Officials with the Maine Center for Disease Control said Tuesday that 20 tests were negative and five are still pending. The results are posted on the agency’s website.
Dr. Nirav Shah, director of the state’s Center for Disease Control, says Maine hospitals and health care providers are preparing for the likely arrival of the new coronavirus. Like other states, Maine will have to manage its supply of medical gowns, gloves, masks and other protective equipment.
“The availability of supplies as its called, PPE, personal protective equipment, has been a challenge not just in Maine but across the country,” he says.
Shah says the CDC has a team set up just to keep track of PPE, and will be able to coordinate the sending of supplies to wherever they are needed.
Shah says individuals can best protect themselves and their families by eating a healthy diet, exercising, getting a good night’s sleep and getting a flu shot — it won’t protect them from the coronavirus, but will reduce their risk of getting sick from the flu.
“The ways that they would otherwise go about staying healthy this winter are simultaneously the best ways to protect themselves and their family from coronavirus. That involves making sure they are eating a good diet, exercising a good night’s sleep and getting their flu shot,” he says.
Correction: 5 test results are still pending, not 10.