All You Need To Know About Coronavirus Outbreak: Don’t Panic! Take Precautions! Spread Awareness!

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  • Coronavirus is spreading at an alarming rate across the globe.
  • Chinese authorities have detected an outbreak of novel coronavirus strain. The disease identified in late December 2019 is termed as COVID-19.
  • The virus belongs to the family of the SARS virus, but the disease is new with no treatments or vaccines yet.
  • The death toll from this virus has cross 3,200 globally.

Coronavirus is known to typically affect the respiratory tracts of birds and mammals, including humans. There are different strains of this virus that causes symptoms similar to flu and pneumonia. In severe cases, it can be associated with severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS).

Coronavirus has been linked to some severe infection outbreaks in the past. However, the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is caused due to a mutated gene of the virus.

The deadly virus has claimed the lives of more than 3000 individuals and over 80,000 are infected worldwide. There is no specific vaccine or treatment that can treat the virus.

Coronavirus in India: The toll of infected people has risen to 30 across the country.

Coronavirus in the United States: More than 150 cases across all states with 11 deaths.

What Is Coronavirus?

The coronavirus group of viruses that cause illnesses like common cold to more life-threatening forms like SARS and MERS. The virus looks like a crown with protrusions all around it and hence the name – coronavirus.

The virus was first isolated in 1937 which was responsible for bronchitis in birds. The infection spread to destroy all poultry stocks. Among humans, these infections occur during winter and early spring. The antibodies of one coronavirus strain may be ineffective against the other. This has proven as a threat to the current pandemic situation.

What Is Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)?

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness caused by a novel strain of the virus. The disease spreads from person to person. COVID-19 virus was first identified in an outbreak in Wuhan, China. Currently, the virus has spread across many countries worldwide.

How Does COVID-19 Spread?

The virus causing COVID-19 is known to have emerged from an animal source but is now spreading rapidly from person to person. Here is how the virus transmits –

It also may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

Person-To-Person

  • This is the main way the virus is thought to spread.
  • It spreads mainly between people in close contact with each other (within about 6 feet).
  • Respiratory droplets produced when infected individual sneezes or coughs increases contamination and transmission.
  • People with symptoms of the disease are more contagious. However, some people show no symptoms in the initial phase.
person to person transmisson
Image courtesy: Pinterest

Contact With Infected Surfaces Or Objects

  • Possible transmission by touching surfaces or objects that are contaminated with the virus.
  • Touching your own mouth, nose, and eyes may also cause the spread. However, this is not considered to be the main reason for coronavirus transmission.

COVID-19 virus seems to be spreading easily and sustainably in the community in some affected geographic areas. The major countries affected are China, Japan, South Korea, Italy, Iran, and the US.

Symptoms Of COVID-19

The symptoms of COVID-19 range from mild to severe and even death. The following symptoms may be seen within 2-14 days after exposure to the causative virus.

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

Some patients might have pneumonia in both lungs, multi-organ failure and may cause death.

Symptoms of coronavirus outbreak

Prevention And Treatment

Prevention

The COVID-19 virus is a novel organism infecting people thus there is no vaccine to prevent the disease. The best way to prevent illness is to take precautionary measures and avoid exposure to the virus.

C – Cover your nose and mouth while you sneeze or cough. Use a tissue and throw it in the thrash to avoid transmission.

O – One important thing to do: Avoid close contact people who are sick. People who are sick should wear a facemask to prevent transmission. Healthcare professionals are also recommended to wear the same.

R – Restrict your social lifestyles. Avoid making it to the parties and gathering. Stay distant from swimming pools. Cook meat and eggs thoroughly. Avoid roadside foods.

O – One simple effort: Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe. Places like railing, doorknobs, countertops, etc. should be kept clean.

N – No handshakes or hugs or kisses. Say Namaste – The Indian way of greeting people!

A – Always wash hands with good cleansing soap. Scrub your fingers and wrists thoroughly every few hours. You may also use a 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer to disinfect your hands.

Proper hygiene and cleanliness can help prevent the spread of the most infectious disease.

coronavirus WHO public advice

Treatment

There is no specific antiviral treatment recommended for COVID-19. People with the disease should aim at achieving symptomatic relief and supportive care.

Contact your doctor immediately if you feel you are sick.

What To Do If You Are Sick With Coronavirus Disease 2019?

The following are the steps you can take to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and also take care of your own health.

  • Contact your doctor immediately.
  • Isolate yourself in a separate room and avoid spread to other members of the family and pets.
  • Stay home to get proper medical care (in case of mild illness). Avoid using ride-sharing, public transportation, or taxis.
  • Make an appointment before you visit a doctor. This will help the healthcare practitioner to prepare the clinic for possible exposure and transmission of the disease.
  • Wear a facemask if you suspect infection by coronavirus. If you have difficulty breathing and cannot wear a mask, people around you should wear facemask or you must isolate yourself to another room.
  • Use a tissue to cover your sneezes and coughs. Wash your hands immediately after you touch your mouth or nose with soap and water for 20 seconds. Keep your hands clean always.
  • Avoid sharing personal household items like glasses, cups, dishes, utensils, beddings, or towels with family and pets in your home. Wash these households with soap and water immediately after use.
  • Disinfect all high-touch surfaces and objects around you (phones, tabletops, doorknobs, railings, toilets, washbasins, keyboard, and more).
  • Monitor your symptoms regularly. Call Corona (COVID-19) Helpline:  INDIA: 011-23978046 in case of a medical emergency.

Global Situation Of COVID-19

  • The death toll linked to the virus rises to 3286. Around 53,423 individuals have recovered from COVID-19.
  • 95,748 confirmed coronavirus cases worldwide, with more cases popping up outside China than inside.
  • The global mortality rate for COVID-19 is 3.4%, WHO said on March 2.
  • India has 30 reported cases of coronavirus disease in 2019 across the country.
  • Over 150 positive cases along with 11 deaths are reported in the US.
  • Italy’s Government has announced a medical emergency with more than 3,089 cases and 107 deaths linked to the coronavirus. All schools and universities will remain closed from March 5 to March 15.
  • Reported cases of COVID-19 have skyrocketed to 6088 in South Korea.
  • The Olympic Games, scheduled for this summer in Tokyo, could be postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.
  • FDA announces 1 million coronavirus diagnostic tests to be available by the end of the week.

Coping With Stress During Coronavirus Outbreak

WHO has prepared a simple guideline to keep stress out of our way in times of this pandemic situation. Look at some tips below. Stay safe. Stay healthy.

coping-with-stress coronavirus

Yes. Coronavirus is a threat to the world. But don’t panic and spread awareness.

Share this article with as many people as you can. Extend a helping hand to the nation.

Stay healthy!!

Get detailed authentic information on COVID-19 on the following websites.

  • WHO – World Health Organization
  • CDC – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Frequently Asked Questions

How did the recent outbreak occur?

The source of the recent outbreak of coronavirus is believed to be the ‘wet market’ in Wuhan, China. This market sold live and dead animals including fish, poultry and other birds. Such markets pose a high risk of human transmission of many viruses due to low hygienic standards in the facility.

The animal source of the infection is unknown however, its original host is thought to be bats. Bats are host to a wide range of viruses like HIV, Ebola, and rabies.

Is the recent strain fatal?

Yes. Many people have died due to infection from this novel strain of coronavirus. Since it’s a new strain there is neither vaccine for prevention nor any medicine for its treatment.

How is India responding to the outbreak?

India has expanded medical screening for all international travelers flying into the country. Those confirmed cases found in India have been isolated to medical facilities and will be treated before release.

How has it affected the economy?

Panic and stress are mounting up everywhere. Prolonged quarantines, supply chain disruptions, fall in travel and tourism, and trade across countries could possibly weaken the global economy and cause a recession.

Is there a vaccine?

No. There is no vaccine available to protect against COVID-19. The best way to prevent infection is to take everyday preventive measures, like washing your hands often, keeping households and public places clean, and avoiding close contact with sick people.

Should I postpone my international travel plans?

Yes, specifically if you are traveling to countries at a high exposure to the virus. In case you have to travel make sure you take all precautionary measures before you travel.