Dear St. Philip’s Families,
In continued efforts to provide child-friendly information regarding our current global health crisis, I have answered some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to serve as a resource for our students.
COVID-19 FAQs for Students:
Where does COVID-19 (that’s what doctors call this new illness) come from?
The virus first showed up in China back in December. Scientists believe that this virus came from bats, and over time the virus changed or mutated and was then able to make humans sick.
Is there an immunity for this virus? What does immunity mean?
Immunity means that the body has found a way to be protected from different types of illnesses. Sometimes this happens after you have already been sick with a type of illness (known as a “natural” or “acquired” immunity), other times we get immunity from shots (also called immunizations or vaccines). Because this virus is new to humans, we still do not have a natural immunity. Scientists are working on making a vaccine, but this usually takes about one year to create.
Here is a video that shows how our immune system works:
What are my chances of getting sick?
Compared with adults, not many kids have become sick with COVID-19. If kids do catch the virus, they don’t seem to get as sick as grownups do.
How does a person catch COVID-19?
It is mainly passed from person to person by coughing or sneezing. It is also possible for the virus to spread when a person touches an object that has the virus on its surface, and then that person touches his/her eyes, nose or mouth (known as our “mucous membranes”).
How can I protect myself?
- As with other illnesses, the best ways to protect yourself and your family are by: Not being around people who are sick.
- Trying to stay at least six feet away from someone who is coughing or sneezing.
- Washing your hands well and many times. Washing your hands before touching food, after you use the bathroom, after blowing your nose, and when you come home from being away from your house. Washing your hands for at least 20 seconds (or the time it takes to sing Happy Birthday) with soap and water, or using hand sanitizer when you don’t have soap and water.
- Trying not to touch your eyes, mouth and nose.
- Sneezing or coughing into the bend of your elbow, then washing your hands.
- Cleaning surfaces that are touched often, like counters, door knobs, phones, computers, etc.
How long does it take to start feeling sick after the virus enters a person’s body (called the incubation period)?
Scientists say it can take as little as 2 days or as long as 14 days for people to start feeling sick.
What does it feel like to be sick with COVID-19?
Most people have a fever, cough, and/or shortness of breath (like the way you may breathe after you have run a race). Most people that get sick can be treated at home, similar to when you have a cold or the flu. There are some people that need to go to the hospital when the illness gets stronger or more severe.
As always, please feel free to reach out to
with any questions or concerns. I hope you are doing well, and I look forward to the day when we can all see each other again.
Stephanie Begert, BSN, RN