HEHP PH~CHESpring 2020 Preceptorship Graduates

With cases in La Crosse County, health experts waiting for signs of community spread

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This shows the exponential growth of the disease if life continued as usual. But if we limit the contacts we have with others, the number of cases goes down significantly and happens over a longer period of time so as to not overwhelm healthcare providers.

“Not knowing how many people are potentially infectious at this particular point in time, raises some concerns,” said Dan Duquette, professor of Health Education & Health Promotion at UW-La Crosse. 

You might have heard experts talk about flattening the curve or seen this graphic, which shows how fast the disease could spread without intervention.  Social isolation drastically slows the number of cases, but it might not get rid of it.  “But at least it becomes very, very negligible in populations,” Duquette said.

“It becomes really important in controlling communicable, infectious diseases to be able to trace the contacts people have had,” Duquette said.

Duquette said this still can be done, like with the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. But, limited resources at the local level could be spread thin if the cases of the new coronavirus increase rapidly through community spread, so we all have to follow the guidelines.  “If we follow those recommendations, social distancing and [good] hand hygiene, we can deal with the disease,” Duquette said.

Environmental Health course at UWL learning from COVID-19

Dr. Dan Duquette's PH 335 Environmental Health class at UW La Crosse

COVID-19, alongside other coronaviruses, such as SARS and MERS are a hot topic right now in UWL's Environmental Health course.

The class, taught by Dr. Dan Duquette, focuses on real-life examples of the viral interaction between people, the environment and animals. 

Students at UW-La Crosse study the origins of the Coronavirus and its threat

Students at UW La Crosse in Dr. Dan Duquette's PH 335 Environmental Health class were busy studying about the coronavirus Tuesday as part of their environmental health class.