Officials to public: Your panicked shopping sprees aren't helping

Washington state health officials have a public service announcement: We know some of you are scared shitless about the coronavirus, but your freaked-out shopping habits are making matters worse. Stop it please, officials urge.

The state Department of Health issued a press release on Saturday asking residents to leave something behind for their neighbors. 

"Before you sweep the store aisles clean of these items, you might want to remind yourself of the harm you’re causing to yourself and your community by overstocking. The more you overstock those supplies, the less is available for your sick neighbors, and for doctors, dentists, and emergency response personnel," the press release reads, adding, "Grocers say consumer overstocking – not a disrupted supply chain — is the main reason their store shelves are empty of many supplies and food items."


Additionally, health officials advise that there is no reason to stock up on bottled water. Our water system is just fine, they say. Got questions? The state Department of Health has set up a number to field your inquiries:
1-800-525-0127 and press #.

Additional resources from the Department of Health:

What to do if you have confirmed or suspected coronavirus disease (COVID-19)
What to do if you were potentially exposed to someone with confirmed coronavirus disease (COVID-19)
What to do if you have symptoms of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and have not been around anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19

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About The Author

Jacob H. Fries

Jacob H. Fries is the editor of the Inlander. In that position, he oversees editorial coverage of the paper and occasionally contributes his own writing. Before joining the paper, he wrote for numerous publications, including the Tampa Bay Times, the Boston Globe and the New York Times. He grew up in Spokane Valley...