As the coronavirus, or COVID- 19, spreads, more students and faculty are beginning to panic. There have been around 70 cases in Florida so far.

The best way for students to prevent themselves from getting the virus is by staying clean. One of the most effective and easiest ways to stay healthy is by washing hands and by using hand sanitizer.

Collier County Superintendent Kamela Patton released a statement warning of the possible outcomes, while also giving advice and caution for the future.

“Practicing good hygiene can help to limit the spread of viruses in our schools,” Patton said. “The current recommended precautions to avoid exposure to the virus are the same precautions you would take to avoid the flu.”

Some of these practices include washing hands, covering coughs, avoiding touching eyes, staying at home when you’re sick and getting a flu vaccine. 

“From now on, I always use hand sanitizer in my class before I sit down and after I leave the class,” senior Caroline Mastrocola said. “I keep a small bottle in my backpack wherever I go.”

Other students have different concerns than the ability to catch the virus, such as missing school and having to make it up.

“I hope that the school doesn’t shut down from this because then we would have to make up school days over the summer,” senior Ben Henthorn said. 

Along with staying clean, it is also important to be aware of the complications of traveling amid the ability to catch the virus. As students are traveling during spring break, they should protect themselves the best they can against the virus by possibly wearing a mask and following the guidelines for staying healthy. 

There have been three cases in Collier County so far. The county will be releasing information pertaining to the virus as it comes out.

“We will be continuing our partnerships with public health experts and updating you when new relevant information is available,” Patton said.