These days are very crucial for all of us as the coronavirus has seriously affected our day-to-day operations. The coronavirus (COVID-19) is almost everywhere and likely to spread further, making more people sick and even kill some. Last week, the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. In this post, we are going to check out five things you should know about the coronavirus (COVID-19).
No.1 – History of COVID-19
COVID-19, short for “Coronavirus Disease 2019,” is the official name given by the World Health Organization ( WHO ). It is from a large family of zoonotic viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to severe respiratory diseases. This virus was originally thought to have emerged from an animal source that infected humans, but now we are seeing the virus spread from person to person. It is spread via droplets when a person coughs or sneezes. One can be exposed when in close contact (within 6 feet) to someone who is sick.
The human coronavirus was first characterized in 1965 where Tyrrell and Bynoe found an upper respiratory tract infection in children which was named as B814. It was also found in human embryonic tracheal organ cultures obtained from the respiratory tract of an adult with a common cold.
In fact, the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS – CoV) virus is also from the family of coronavirus which came from direct or indirect contact with camels which caused 842 deaths. Shockingly, there are several known coronaviruses circulating in animals that have not yet infected humans.
No.2 – How it started in 2019?
The 2019–20 coronavirus (2019-nCoV) was originated from the Wuhan seafood market in December 2019 where birds, rabbits, bats and snakes, monkeys, chickens, donkeys, sheep, pigs, camels, foxes, badgers, and bamboo rats are traded illegally.
- 31st December 2019: China informed WHO that they found an unknown virus spreading in Wuhan province. On 1st January 2020, China confirmed that the 41 admitted hospitalized patients are affected by the 2019-nCoV infection.
- 5th January 2020: Chinese officials confirmed that this was a reoccurrence of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) virus, an illness that originated in China and killed more than 770 people worldwide in 2002-2003.
- 11th January 2020: China announced its first death from the virus, a 61-year-old man who had purchased goods from the Wuhan seafood market.
- 13th January 2020: the WHO reported a case in Thailand, the first outside of China, in a woman who had arrived from Wuhan.
- 20th January 2020: China confirmed its third death and 500 more infections, with cases including other provinces like Beijing, Shanghai, and Shenzhen. On January 26, the death toll rose to 56, with almost 2000 confirmed cases.
- 30th January 2020: the World Health Organization (WHO) declared coronavirus a global emergency as the death toll jumped to 170.
- 11th February 2020: the WHO announced that the new coronavirus would be called “COVID-19”. On March 11, WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic as more than 35 countries which include India, Philippines, Singapore, USA, UK, Italy, and Spain confirmed positive cases.
- 15th March 2020: Spain Italy reported about 3000 new coronavirus cases and more than 200 deaths over the last 24 hours. On March 17, the total number of cases in Italy rose to 31,506 with 345 new coronavirus deaths in the country over the last 24 hours.
No.3 – How to break the chain and protect yourself and others?
How it spreads?
The current understanding is that the virus is spread mostly person to person. As I mentioned earlier, it is spread via droplets when a person coughs or sneezes. One can be exposed when in close contact (within 6 feet) to someone who is sick. Current symptoms reported for patients with COVID-19 include mild to severe respiratory illness with fever 100.4 °F [38 °C], cough, runny nose and difficulty in breathing. The symptoms may appear anywhere from 2 to 14 days after exposure.
Steps to protect yourself and others
Well, there is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. However, there are some preventive actions to protect yourself and others.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Don’t bite your nails.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your mouth and nose while sneezing or coughing and dispose of the used tissue in a garbage bin immediately.
- Clean frequently touched objects and surfaces with antiseptic liquid water (eg. dettol with water).
- Take a shower after coming home from work/outside.
- Even though, it is unclear whether COVID-19 can spread through the meat. Let’s avoid having non-veg for some time. Instead, eat more vegetables to improve your immunity.
- Avoid littering in public areas.
- Wash your bedsheets and pillow covers once a week.
- Dispose of used napkins and food wastes frequently.
No.4 – What is happening now?
The COVID-19 has affected 167 countries and territories around the world and the death toll has jumped to 7954 with 198,178 confirmed cases. However, I am relieved to hear that 82,779 people have recovered from the COVID-19.
Here is a link, if you want to know the live updates of the Coronavirus spread. Thanks to the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University (JHU) for this live update.
Click here – COVID-19 live update dashboard
No.5 – What should you do if are sick?
- Stay at home if you are sick. Your health and other’s are more precious than your work.
- Avoid crowded places and public transportation.
- Practice social distancing if you are sick.
- Limit your contact with pet animals.
- Visit the designated hospital immediately if you feel any of the symptoms mentioned above.
- Wear a facemask if you are sick.
- Avoid sharing personal items like clothes, towels, makeup products and etc.
- Monitor your symptoms and seek medical care right away if your illness is worsening (eg. difficulty in breathing).
Stay safe and share this article with others.
Let’s break the chain and protect ourselves and others for this pandemic. #breakthechain
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