Coronavirus Affects Bethel and Local Community

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MISHAWAKA- Coronavirus is attacking the health of thousands of individuals across the globe and impacting businesses, communities and our healthcare systems. 

“[Coronavirus is] a new disease that causes respiratory illness in people and can spread from person to person,” according to Goshen Hospital. (https://goshenhealth.com/health-library/coronavirus-covid-19)  

Many individuals, especially at the beginning of the outbreak, asked what the difference is between the flu and COVID-19 are and used this question to downplay the situation.  

But there is a difference: we know how to treat the flu. Influenza is an old enemy, and healthcare providers know many things about how it works, how to treat it and how to make vaccinations to fight against it. (https://www.livescience.com/new-coronavirus-compare-with-flu.html ) 

 “COVID-19 is the wildcard in terms of how it has spread and how many deaths it will cause.”  

The World Health Organization has recorded over 266,073 confirmed cases around the world, and a total of 11,184 deaths as of Mar. 21. On Mar. 19, South Bend officials declared an advisory against nonessential traveling with five total confirmed COVID-19 cases in St. Joseph County. (https://www.southbendtribune.com/news/local/south-bend-declares-emergency-warns-against-non-essential-travel-amid/article_07a7be38-69f5-11ea-9b7a-bb3e951ac465.html)  

Bethel University is no stranger to the outward effects of the coronavirus; the school is closing prematurely and classes will continue online, as announced on Mar. 20 through an email and video announcement by President Chenoweth.  

“It is with a heavy heart that we announce the decision for all classes to remain online through the end of the spring semester, in response to the COVID-19 crisis,” Chenoweth said. 

Bethel University is not alone in their response to COVID-19; Notre Dame, Holy Cross and Indiana University South Bend have all suspended in-person classes.  

Several local businesses are closed and will not reopen until further notice; see here for a list of current businesses that are closed: https://www.abc57.com/news/stores-that-are-open-and-closed-amid-covid-19-concerns  

Hospitals around the area have started to implement new rules about who can come into the buildings. Both St. Joseph Regional Medical Center Hospital and Goshen Hospital are encouraging people to stay home unless there is a true emergency and are discouraging individuals from going to their primary doctor’s office without calling ahead first.  

COVID-19 is a serious situation; for more information, please stay updated by watching for future articles from the Beacon and other reliable news sources. 


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