What We Have Learned so Far

Dear Cadets & Staff;
It has been quite a month.  As we all learn and adjust personally, more has also been learned about COVID-19.
Things to be Aware of
  1.  Symptoms experienced may be broader.  
    • Fever, dry cough and feeling short of breath are still the most common.
    • However,  people may also have: fatigue, lightheadedness, sore throat, congestion, muscle aches, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea. Contagiousness - People seem to be most contagious the 1st few days of symptoms and the 1st day before symptoms develop.  
  2. Contagiousness - People seem to be most contagious the 1st few days of symptoms and the 1st day before symptoms develop. 
    • People may spread the illness for around 3 days before showing symptoms.
  3. Many people (perhaps 20-50%) have no symptoms or minimal symptoms while sick, but can still be contagious. This is why masks, distancing, and hand hygiene remain important to prevent passing it on to someone who may get very sick.  Minor symptoms or no symptoms, we still have to be part of the solution.
  4. Smoking and Vaping are risk factors for more severe illness as well as: obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, cardiac illness, lung illnesses and stress.
  5. Young people are not immune from illness and may develop serious symptoms, but the absolute highest ICU admissions and death rates by far, continue to be people over 65, those with other illnesses, or those living in long term care facilities.
    • Your older family members need everyone else, and you, to continue to be smart and careful in order to keep them safe.  This virus is hurting people in our families, and a serious pneumonia can be hard to recover from.
  6. Some good news on the horizon  - vaccines do exist are actively undergoing testing, preliminary studies are hopeful on one of the new drugs (Remdesivir) and many drugs continue to be tested,  a study is showing that sunlight seems to destabilize the virus on surfaces, (which will hopefully decrease spread risk over the summer), and so far, hospital capacity has not been overtopped in Massachusetts.
What to do?
  • For now, continue to keep 6 feet apart, wear a mask in public when indoors or can't distance outdoors, and good handwashing are still all the best and right steps. 
  • Keep your immune system in good shape through some physical activity, good nutrition, emotional wellness, and adequate rest. 
  • As the disease numbers go down, as testing ability goes up, and as we get better treatments, more group immunity, and a vaccine, things will get better.
  • Stay flexible.  Every week, more is known and learned and things will definitely improve.  
At first some adjustments and inconveniences will still be needed to move ahead, but with advances in treatment, testing and immunity, we will ultimately get past coronavirus and will again together enjoy our "large group" gathering at the MMA campus.
Please stay in touch.  We are at your service, regardless of your location.
Monitored Phone - Medical and Counseling:  508-830-5048
Monitored Medical Email: nurse@maritime.edu
Monitored Counseling Email: counseling@maritime.edu
Our Best,
The MMA Medical Team
Jeffrey Cukor, MD, FACEP
Academy Physician
Massachusetts Maritime Academy