Protect Yourself From Coronavirus

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Distinguishing these symptoms from seasonal influenza is challenging.

Rapidly Spreading Virus

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As the death toll rises above 3,600, every news organization is scrambling to gather details about a rapidly spreading disease called 2019 Novel Coronavirus. The out­break that began in Wuhan, China has breached continents, with cases in the United States, Canada, Japan, Singapore, Germany, UK, Philippines, and India. Any statistics are rapidly outdated. You can try to follow the number of globally reported cases on a big-data interactive map with highest concentration within Mainland China.

A group of five infected people can spread the virus to approximately 368 people in just five infection cycles. To treat more than 80,500 infected citizens, China is constructing quick-build hospitals within days. Of the more than 107,000 cases worldwide, better than 60,000 have so far recovered. Conditions led the WHO to declare a public health emer­gency on January 30. As of February 24, the virus is still considered a pre-pandemic by the WHO.

The number of cases soared when China revised the method of identifying patients with the virus. There is a group of patients who only test positive very late with the nucleic acid testing. Hence, new methods, including lung scans, are confirming more cases.

Protect Yourself From Coronavirus

Map of countries having people infected with 2019 novel coronavirus.

By comparison, the 2014–2016 Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) outbreak in West Africa ended with 28,616 infections and 11,310 deaths (39.5%) reported in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. An additional 36 cases and 15 deaths occurred outside of these three countries, according to the CDC.

Passengers and pilots do not feel safe traveling to China because of the coronavirus. In fact, the Allied Pilots Association filed a lawsuit seeking a temporary restraining order for American Airline’s US-China flights citing the “serious, and in many ways still unknown, health threats posed by the coronavirus.” Travel restrictions and a government-imposed extended Chinese New Year are temporarily scuttling the Asian tech industry.

⚠️ Temporary Travel Ban

February 2, 2020—In an effort to contain the novel coronavirus outbreak, the United States is temporarily denying entry to foreign nationals who visited China in the 14 days prior to their arrival to the US. Restrictions also apply to US citizens who have been in China's Hubei province, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, in the 2 weeks prior to their return to the US. —CNN

What Are The Symptoms?

The pneumonia-like disease officially called COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) was first reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) on December 31, 2019. Chinese scientists link the coronavirus to a family of viruses that includes SARS and MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome).

Protect Yourself From Coronavirus

A coronavirus was behind the 2003 SARS global outbreak with 774 deaths (10%) and 7,629 probable and confirmed infections.Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Patients primarily present fever and cough. Other symptoms include a shortness of breath, headaches, aching muscles and confusion accord­ing to the research published in the journal The Lancet. Distinguishing these symptoms from seasonal influenza is challeng­ing. Though vaccina­tions are available for the flu, nothing is currently available to prevent coronavirus. According to the CDC, “The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to this virus.”

Preemptive Action

Kevin Williams is a health advocate and writer of hundreds of articles for multiple websites, including: A Bit More Healthy, KevinMD, and Sue’s Nutrition Buzz.

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