Coronavirus: Call before you visit your neighbor -- and your doctor | Prairie Public Broadcasting

Coronavirus: Call before you visit your neighbor -- and your doctor

Mar 13, 2020

Gov. Doug Burgum (center) and representatives of the Department of Health and the National Guard at a coronavirus briefing in Bismarck.
Credit Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

Gov. Doug Burgum said North Dakota has always been a place where neighbors care about neighbors.

"Often that caring has been, if there's a crisis or a situation, part of what we do is, everybody comes over with a hotdish," Burgum said. "Everybody knocks on the door, and said, 'What can we do? How can we help?'"

But Burgum said with the coronavirus threat, neighbors can be a little more cautious, but still can be neighborly.

"In some cases, it might be better to call that neighbor, rather than just drop by," Burgum said.

Burgum also said if someone is self-isolating, that could lead to potential mental health issues.

"So, if you know someone who is home that's self-isolating, it's still a good time to reach out to them," Burgum said. "And we have all the great tools -- Facetime, Skype, or a phone call. There's things we can do to take care of each other, and also reducing the potential threat."

Also, if you suspect you have the coronavirus, and you want to go see your doctor, or go to the emergency room, don’t just show up – call first.

That’s the recommendation from the North Dakota Department of Health.

"One of the biggest messages we get from the health care community is that people are still just showing up," said the Health Department' Kirby Kruger. "Individuals who have any respiratory symptons who are seeking care should make that phone call, so that your providers can prepare to handle you in the safest way possible."