With everything going on in the world right now, new protocols and terms are making headlines hourly. To keep our community informed and on the same page, SE Texas ER & Hospital is breaking down the latest updates on COVID-19.

What’s in the News

With so many news sources reporting on the pandemic, sometimes the jargon used can get confusing.

Here’s what the popular lingo you’re hearing means:
  1. “Flatten the curve”: Protecting our resources by taking measures to keep the number of cases in the U.S. below the threshold of healthcare system capacity
  2. “Social Distancing”: Avoiding gatherings that draw crowds of 10 or more people and staying at least 6 feet away from others in public
  3. “Self-quarantine”: Opting to stay home and refraining from contact with others
  4. “Shelter-in-place” or “Stay-at-Home”: Government-issued orders to stay home, only leaving your house for essential errands

All of the terms mentioned above serve a common goal—to stop the spread of COVID-19.

As of March 24th, Harris County residents have been asked to continue practicing social distancing and stay at home. Per County Judge Lisa Hidalgo’s orders, residents should only leave their homes for essential errands until the order expires on April 3rd.

Keep Your Space

It’s essential that as many Americans participate in social distancing as possible because carriers can show no symptoms. This means that even if you feel perfectly fine, you could still be carrying the virus and spreading it to others out in public. Staying home whenever possible is a courtesy to the elderly and immunocompromised, as they have the highest risk of fatality from COVID-19. 

Examples of social distancing include:
  • Working from home instead of going into the office
  • Closing schools or making classes online
  • Facetiming and calling relatives instead of meeting up
  • Canceling or postponing large meetings, events, and trips
  • Avoiding all travel

Diving Deeper

So, what is the curve, and how do we flatten it?

As demonstrated above, “the curve” refers to the projected number of people who will test positive for COVID-19 over a period of time. The height and width of the curve depend on the virus’s infection rate.

The more people who are infected in a short amount of time, the higher the peak, as seen with the red curve. Adversely, the fewer amount of cases over a long period makes for a lower, stretched out curve. The blue curve is what we are trying to accomplish by practicing social distancing, to protect people and medical resources.

Need Help?

We’re here to help if you believe you’ve come in contact with the virus, or have symptoms like fever, shortness of breath, cough, and low energy.

SE Texas ER & Hospital is now offering Telemedicine, a way for patients to connect directly with one of our providers in a location of their choosing. Telemedicine benefits everyone because those-affected can now avoid the public by being treated at home, and in less time. SE Texas & ER Hospital is also offering inpatient beds for high-risk patients who need to avoid contracting the virus.

We are all in this together, and we hope this article helped clarify questions you might have had about the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. For more, credible news on the latest COVID-19 updates, make sure to frequently check the CDC and WHO websites.

Disclaimer: As a service to our readers, SE Texas ER & Hospital and Nutex Health state no content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinicians.


Nutex Health, Inc supports you and your family’s health. You can depend on SE Texas ER & Hospital, or any of our concierge-level medical facilities to deliver the emergency care you deserve, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.