Excerpts from CDC.gov
What May Happen
More cases of COVID-19 are likely to be identified in the United States in the coming days, including more instances of community spread. It’s likely that at some point, widespread transmission of COVID-19 in the United States will occur. Widespread transmission of COVID-19 would translate into large numbers of people needing medical care at the same time. Schools, childcare centers, and workplaces, may experience more absenteeism. Mass gatherings may be sparsely attended or postponed. Public health and healthcare systems may become overloaded, with elevated rates of hospitalizations and deaths. Other critical infrastructure, such as law enforcement, emergency medical services, and sectors of the transportation industry may also be affected. Healthcare providers and hospitals may be overwhelmed. At this time, there is no vaccine to protect against COVID-19 and no medications approved to treat it. Nonpharmaceutical interventions would be the most important response strategy.
Older people and people with severe chronic conditions should take special precautions because they are at higher risk of developing serious COVID-19 illness.
imho - this does not require anyone to buy surgical masks or extra toilet paper! It IS worth staying at home to reduce your exposure if you have underlying conditions like diabetes or COPD. Better safe than sorry.
Be careful out there (in my best "Hill Street Blues" voice)!