As numerous states in our nation are battling large surges of new COVID-19 cases, while many others are on the brink of closing, individuals must take the proper precautions and measures to slow the spread of COVID-19.

In vast cities and urban areas, many residents may face different challenges and underlying forces that impact how ready or prepared they are during these unprecedented times. Urban settings can serve as hotspots for diseases to spread.

According to Centers to Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “long-standing systemic health and social inequities have put some members of racial and ethnic minority groups at increased risk of getting COVID-19 or experiencing severe illness, regardless of age.” According to the data, non-Hispanic black persons have a rate approximately five (5) times that of non-Hispanic white persons, while Hispanic or Latino persons have a rate approximately four (4) times that of non-Hispanic white persons.

The U.S Food, Drug, Administration (FDA) has joined with CDC as well as numerous International and medical forces to address the COVID-19 disease. To protect against the spread of the virus, these organizations encourage healthy hand hygiene and a general awareness of how the disease travels. From person-to-person contact, usually between people who are within six feet of one another, to respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes, this disease can spread quickly.

“The best way to prevent the spread of infections and decrease the risk of getting sick is by washing your hands with plain soap and water,” according to the CDC. “Washing hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds is essential, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after coughing, sneezing, or blowing one’s nose.”

It is important to avoid close contact with those who are infected by maintaining a six feet or more distance, and to cover the nose and mouth with a mask or face cloth in public settings or around people not in your current household. It is also encouraged to cover sneezes and coughs and to disinfect frequently touched surfaces on the daily to clean off any contamination or germs. Remember that an infected person can still spread the virus whether or not they show symptoms.

Together with the awareness and education on how important it is to practice social distancing and healthy hygiene, the spread of the coronavirus disease in cities and urban areas can soon come to a halt. Individuals must protect themselves and enlighten others on how serious this virus is, that way life can return to the way it was before with more precautionary measures.

For up-to-date facts and information on COVID-19, visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html.