Questions and answers about Coronavirus

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Questions and answers about Coronavirus

Questions and answers about Coronavirus Basic protective measures against the new coronavirus. Stay aware of the latest information on the COVID-19 outbreak

Questions and answers about Coronavirus
Questions and answers about Coronavirus

What is the coronavirus?

Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.

Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people.  Detailed investigations found that SARS-CoV was transmitted from civet cats to humans and MERS-CoV from dromedary camels to humans. Several known coronaviruses are circulating in animals that have not yet infected humans.

Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, the infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and even death.

Standard recommendations to prevent infection spread include regular hand washing, covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, thoroughly cooking meat and eggs. Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.

Source: WHO

How many people have died from coronavirus?

The World Health Organization urged governments around the world to pull out “all the stops” in the fight against the increasingly pervasive and deadly outbreak of the new coronavirus.

This is not a time for excuses. This is a time for pulling out all the stops,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said Thursday. “Countries have been planning for scenarios like this for decades,” he said. “Now is the time to act on those plans.”

More than 95,000 people in 86 countries have been infected with the virus and more than 3,200 people have died. There have been 12 deaths in the United States — 11 in Washington state and one in California — and more than 20 states have reported cases of the virus.

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California declared a state of emergency after the first death was confirmed there Wednesday. A cruise ship that the victim had traveled on was being held offshore in San Francisco while passengers are tested for the virus. Officials said 35 people on the ship had symptoms of the coronavirus.

China, the country where the outbreak started, appeared to be over the worst of the epidemic, with daily death and infection rates declining.

The disease’s impact on everyday life is mounting. Some of America’s biggest corporations have told employees in West Coast offices to work from home. The United Nations education agency UNESCO said more than 290 million children were out of school around the world due to closures in more than 20 countries.

The Senate on Thursday approved $8.3 billion dollars in supplemental spending to help respond to the outbreak. Vice President Mike Pence said President Trump would sign the bill on Friday. Meanwhile, the administration is facing criticism over the availability of test kits. Pence has said any American would be able to get a test – but in a Thursday visit to 3M, the top manufacturer of medical masks, he acknowledged that isn’t currently the case.

Source: cbsnews

Questions and answers about Coronavirus

 

How to prepare for the coronavirus?

Just a week ago, the first “community spread” of the new coronavirus (COVID-19) was detected in the United States: a woman in Northern California who hadn’t been exposed to anyone known to have the virus.

Before her diagnosis, people in the United States were only thought to be at risk for COVID-19 if they had recently traveled to a high-risk area abroad or been exposed to someone who was sick.

But the woman in California hadn’t traveled internationally, nor had she been in contact with anyone with the infection.

This suggests that person-to-person transmission may be more likely than we originally anticipated.

Since then, COVID-19 casesTrusted Source has popped up around the country. As of March 3, in addition to the 48 cases from repatriated people from the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan, there have been 60 new cases across 12 states. Nine people have died.

Soon, we may see widespread activity. Health officials are urging citizens not to panic but to prepare.

In initial testing, experts have found that COVID-19 may result in mild symptoms for many people.

Here are five expert-backed ways to prepare for a pandemic.

Questions and answers about Coronavirus

 

Buy soap and disinfectants

Health experts widely agree that frequent handwashing is the most effective way to avoid contracting COVID-19. So, the first thing to do is to make sure you have a healthy supply of soap.

“For preparation, I think the most important thing is to make sure they have enough soap — and that can be plain old bar soap to wash their hands on a regular basis,” said Dr. Michael Ison, an infectious disease physician, and professor of infectious diseases and organ transplantation at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.

The virus may also be able to survive on surfaces for longer than a week, so disinfecting wipes can be useful.

Some researchTrusted Source shows bleach- and ethanol-based cleaning products may be the best at wiping out viruses on surfaces.

You don’t need to stockpile disinfectants and hand sanitizers, Ison says, but have a bottle or two available.

Stock up on supplies

Experts say that if you’re healthy, you probably don’t need to buy face masks.

For one, they’re not going to be very effective in preventing you from getting sick. Surgical masks are thin and have spaces through the sides where germs can easily get in.

But if people keep buying the masks, there will continue to be shortages, and the individuals who actually need the masks — sick people and healthcare providers — won’t have them.

What you do need is a couple weeks’ worth of food and supplies, according to the Department of Homeland Security.

“Having supplies that can help your household run normally for a few weeks is sufficient,” said Dr. Manisha Juthani, a Yale Medicine infectious disease specialist.

Look for frozen foods and canned items that won’t go bad.

You don’t need to stock up for the end of the world but stay on top of what you have to ensure you don’t run out of goods if you’re homesick for a couple of weeks.

 

Questions and answers about Coronavirus

Stock up on medicine

It’s also crucial to keep an eye on your medications.

Over-the-counter medications like pain relievers, fever reducers, and decongestants are thought to help relieve milder symptoms of COVID-19.

Rather than waiting until the last minute to fill prescriptions, keep them replenished.

“I think one of the most important steps people can take right now is to be sure they have a 30- or 90-day supply of critical medications that may be hard to get due to supply chain interruptions,” Linda Lee, DrPH, an environmental health expert and chief medical affairs and science officer at UV Angel, told Healthline.

People who have an underlying condition — such as lung disease, heart disease, or diabetes — need to be even more vigilant to protect themselves, Lee adds.

Early reports show the disease is most severe in people with other health conditions.

Check-in with work and school

We’re probably going to see the school and work closures in communities where the activity is heightened.

Now’s the time to call your children’s schools and your boss and ask them about sick day policies so you can put a plan in place.

Companies should reevaluate their work from home policies, as people will need to quarantine themselves if they contract the virus.

“We will need to listen to the guidance of our public health officials that will be best equipped to inform these decisions. All parents need to have backup plans should their children need to remain home,” Juthani said.

Questions and answers about Coronavirus

 

Pay attention to local news

Most importantly, stay up to date with what’s happening in your community. If the new coronavirus does strike, look to your local health officials.

“If COVID-19 hits your community, first remember to stay calm and not to panic. Listen to the guidance of your local government and public health officials,” Juthani said.

This is a quickly developing situation. New information comes out every day — so how we should prepare and respond will likely evolve in the coming days and vary from community to community.

In the meantime, start to prepare and practice healthy hygiene habits just as you would during any cold or flu season, Lee says.

Avoid close contact with people who are sick. And remember, some people with COVID-19 may be asymptomatic, so handwashing and cleaning surfaces can go a long way.

ALSO READ: Coronavirus, Myths symptoms and protect yourself

The bottom line

The United States may soon see widespread transmission of the new coronavirus (COVID-19) activity.

Health officials are urging citizens not to panic but to prepare.

In the meantime, stock up on soap, food, and medications. Talk to your work and kids’ school about potential closures, and put a plan in place.

Pay attention to local health authorities. If an outbreak hits your community, they’ll have up-to-the-minute guidance on how to avoid getting sick.

Source – healthline

How did the coronavirus get started?

The source of the coronavirus is believed to be a “wet market” in Wuhan which sold both dead and live animals including fish and birds.

Such markets pose a heightened risk of viruses jumping from animals to humans because hygiene standards are difficult to maintain if live animals are being kept and butchered on-site. Typically, they are also densely packed.

 

Bats are host to a wide range of zoonotic viruses including Ebola, HIV, and rabies.

Source – telegraph

How is coronavirus spread?

Like cold and flu bugs, the virus is spread via droplets when a person coughs or sneezes. The droplets land on surfaces and are picked up on the hands of others and spread further. People catch the virus when they touch their infected hands to their mouth, nose or eyes.

It follows that the single most important thing you can do to protect yourself is to keep your hands clean by washing them frequently with soap and water or a hand sanitizing gel.

There is some debate about whether the disease is airborne – there is no evidence for it yet, but that could change. Airborne viruses linger for a longer period of time than those spread by droplets and can also be spread in air conditioning and ventilation systems.

The current advice is that the disease can only be spread between close contacts – defined as spending more than 15 minutes within two meters of an infected person. For more information, go to our guide on symptoms and treatment.

Source – telegraph

Questions and answers about Coronavirus

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