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In February 2020 the World Health Organization announced an official name for Coronavirus disease 2019, abbreviated as COVID-19. In COVID-19, ‘CO’ stands for ‘corona,’ ‘VI’ for ‘virus,’ and ‘D’ for disease. There are many types of human coronaviruses including some that commonly cause mild upper-respiratory tract illnesses. COVID-19 is a new disease which can cause a wide range of effects – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness and death. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure and include the following:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

COVID-19 is thought to spread mainly from person to person, through droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. Spread is more likely when people are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet). To limit spread, health officials recommend frequent hand washing, social distancing (staying 6 ft from others not in your household), and wearing a mask when social distancing is not possible.

The global pandemic caused by COVID-19 has spread to Virginia and Lynchburg. Up-to-date numbers are here at Virginia Dept of Health.


People who are sick or know that they have COVID-19 should isolate at home. COVID-19 can also be spread by people who do not have symptoms and do not know that they are infected. That’s why it’s important for EVERYONE to practice social distancing (staying at least 6 feet away from other people) and wear cloth face coverings in public settings. Cloth face coverings provide an extra layer to help prevent the respiratory droplets from traveling in the air and onto other people. Surgical masks provide better protection, but homemade masks are protective. The more people wear them, the more protection! N-95 respirators continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.

** There was some confusion and hesitation to recommend masks for all at the beginning of the outbreak, but now we have more science to support guidelines for everyone to wear masks. Listen or read here.



Downtown Lynchburg Association

Tony Camm

2nd gear Upcycling



The good news is that kids have a lower risk of getting really sick with COVID-19.  Even if they are exposed, they have very minimal symptoms, and they have a significantly lower rate of overwhelming infection or death. In the last 4 months, there has been ONLY ONE death due to COVID in the Commonwealth of Virginia in anyone under 20 years.

The other good news is that transmission from kids is low. Other countries have experimented with reopening with moderate successWhile daycare centers in the US stayed open through the pandemic, there were not a significant number of cases where kids got adults sick. As schools in the US have opened this fall, we have not seen large increases in cases. 

GO HERE FOR VA Dept of Ed Up-to-date Information

The American Academy of Pediatrics has come out with a strong message of support for reopening schools in the midst of the pandemic.  It is better for kids to be in school less than 6 feet apart than to learn from home online. Staying home has risks including learning loss and social isolation.   So opening schools is safe and essential for them, their education, and ultimately our economy. Working parents cannot be productive if they are also teaching.  In school, it will be important to wear masks when possible, wash hands, and stay distanced when possible. Most schools will plan to put your child in small groups that they will stay with all day. This will decrease the total number of kids that your child is exposed to, and who are exposed to your child. It will be essential to notify your school if anyone in your household tests positive for COVID-19. At home online learning will be available to children who cannot attend school due to illness.

Here is the Phased Guidance for Virginia Schools

Lynchburg City Schools has this helpful Q&A on returning to a hybrid in-person learning plan.

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