Alabama has reported its first case of the novel coronavirus, leaving Idaho and West Virginia as the only remaining states spared by the virus. In a press release sent out Friday, Gov. Kay Ivey did not release any additional details about the case but said the state was prepared to handle it.
“Along with my fellow Alabamians, I have closely monitored the rapidly changing events regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19),” Ivey said. “As a state, we have taken precautionary measures and made preparations in the case that the virus would eventually reach our state. As I have emphasized time and again, the safety and health of Alabamians is paramount.”
Ivey said the state has taken a “calm and collected approach” in preparing for cases of coronavirus, and that “we need to remember that calm and steady wins the race.”
“Alabamians should not be fearful, but instead, use commonsense to watch out for themselves and others,” Ivey said. “We will remain engaged on the matter and continue prioritizing the health and wellbeing of all Alabamians.”
The state’s health officer advised residents to be prudent and use “proper hygiene behaviors such as handwashing, not touching their faces with unwashed hands, covering coughs and sneezes and staying home if they have a fever.”
“As a precaution, it is suggested that any gatherings of more than 500 people be postponed or canceled,” Dr. Scott Harris said.
There have been over 1,600 cases of COVID-19 in the U.S., and at least 41 deaths.