As of Sunday, March 15, 2020, Illinois had 64 confirmed cases of COVID-19, 449 have tested negative, and 195 tests are pending result. No fatalities from the virus have been documented in Illinois.
The fatalities are generally in the elderly and immuno-compromised, and usually when they do not get proper care (such as those on the cruise ships). Young people and children tend not to get extremely sick with this flu, but for elderly people it can be fatal, just like any other flu, although this one has a much higher mortality rate for these populations.
The highest number of cases has been in Washington State, 642 as of March 15th. New York State has recorded the second-highest number of cases of coronavirus in the United States, with 613 people infected as of March 15th. At least 269 were in New York City. The largest cluster initially was in New Rochelle, a town in Westchester County, about 17 miles north of Manhattan. New Rochelle now has 178 positive cases.
Some perspective: We have 12,000,000 people in Illinois, more than the population of Sweden. Note that 2018 statistics show that in Illinois more than 25,000 people died from heart disease and 23,000 died from cancer. About 2,500 died from other flu viruses. This virus is extremely contagious, however.
To date, none of our preceptors have announced any changes in rotations.
You need to do your own research and make your decision based on your own situation. If you are immuno-compromised in any way, you need to be very careful anyway, but especially now. The travel restrictions as of March 15th are limited to China, Iran, the Schengen area of Europe, the UK and Ireland. If you are sick, please postpone your rotation until your symptoms have cleared up.
Our hospital and outpatient sites continue to receive medical students and externs. If you have been bumped from a rotation due to the corona virus, contact us. We can accommodate you immediately.