Updates & Issues
Welcome to my updates and issues page where I address current affairs, communicate my stand on issues and seek input from you. Please take a moment to take my Community Issues Survey so I can focus on the issues most important to you.
As your elected Maine District #69 Representative, your safety and health are a primary concern. Please see below for information and links on the coronavirus (COVID-19) and steps you can take to protect yourselves and families, and minimize the spread this disease:
What can I do to keep my family do to stay healthy and safe?
There are steps you can take to minimize your chances of contracting the virus and limit its spread. Here is what the CDC recommends:
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds;
Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, especially when out in public;
Avoid contact with people who are sick and stay home if you are sick;
Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue away;
Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe;
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not recommend the general public wear a mask to prevent COVID-19.
What if I have symptoms or think I may have been exposed to COVID-19?
It is understandable that any kind of cold or flu-like symptoms might provoke anxiety when an outbreak of this type dominates our daily news. Be aware, first and foremost, that the vast majority of people infected with the virus experience it as they would a common cold or the flu and make a full recovery. The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are cough, fever, or shortness of breath. Most individuals with symptoms need do nothing more than stay home and care for themselves until they are well. If, however, you experience more severe symptoms or are otherwise concerned about your symptoms or have reason to believe you were exposed to someone known to have COVID-19, call your primary care provider before presenting at a clinic, doctor's office or emergency department. This is the best way to determine the right course of treatment for you and limit the spread of infection.
Should I be tested?
Patients who should be considered for testing include those individuals who have symptoms (fever, cough, or shortness of breath) and have returned within 14 days from an area with a known COVID-19 outbreak or have been in close contact with a person with confirmed COVID-19. If you feel you should be tested for COVID-19, please call your primary care provider first so you can get the care you need and we can limit the spread of possible infection. Guidance for who should be considered for testing is likely to change.
Should I change my travel plans or avoid large gatherings?
Older adults and people with serious chronic medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and lung disease are at a higher risk of serious illness from COVID-19. If you are in this high-risk group, the federal Centers for Disease Control is now recommending that you reconsider travel and avoid crowds. Please see the CDC's website for more information on what you can do to prepare. If you are not in a high-risk category, there are also some recommendations and warnings about traveling to places in the world with ongoing outbreaks of COVID-19. Please see CDC's website for details.
Though the vast majority of COVID-19 cases produce mild to moderate flu-like symptoms, a small number of patients – many of them elderly with underlying medical conditions – have become severely ill or have died. Across our system, we are well prepared to care for these patients with expertise in infectious disease and respiratory illness. Importantly, our staff is trained to provide this specialized care and has the supplies they need to do so safely with minimal risk to themselves and the community.
What if I have more questions?
As noted above, if you have flu-like symptoms and experience shortness of breath or are otherwise concerned about your symptoms or have reason to believe you were exposed to someone known to have COVID-19, call your health care provider. To keep up with the latest information, consult trusted sources such as the Maine or Federal CDC.