Coronavirus-What You Can Do To Protect Yourself

Courtesy Graphic
Joseph Grant

The Coronavirus (or COVID-19) outbreak is all one has heard about in the past few weeks. Online, people have joked about and have made light-hearted memes of the virus with the corona name, but it is no laughing matter. The outbreak is spreading amid reports of people dying in various countries in Europe. Regarding the United States, it is said it is not a case of if but when the infection will spread and potentially kill, experts say.
There have been 57 confirmed cases of the infection reported in the U.S so far. The states with confirmed cases are: Arizona, California, Illinois, Massachusetts, Wisconsin and Washington.
The virus has now been reported in 40 countries around the world. A total of 81,194 cases have been confirmed around the globe, resulting in 2,770 deaths. There have been 2,718 deaths in China, 15 in Iran, 12 in South Korea, 12 in Italy and one each in Japan, France, the Philippines and Taiwan as of Wednesday. On a brighter note, there have been 30,281 cases of recovery from the virus.
A coronavirus is a large family of viruses, not a singular one. Several coronaviruses are known to cause respiratory infection ranging from the common cold to sever respiratory diseases such as MERS and SARS. The most recently discovered of these is the current COVID-19. This particular virus was unknown before the outbreak began in Wuhan in December 2019.
The most common of COVID-19 symptoms are fever, tiredness, and dry cough. Some patients have complained of aches and pains, nasal congestion, runny nose, sore throat or diarrhea. These symptoms are usually mild and begin gradually. About 80 percent recover from the disease without needing special medical treatment. As its usual, anyone feeling these symptoms should see their physician.
Coronavirus spreads as any other viral illness; through small droplets in the air that are released when a person breathes or coughs. Unlike regular flu, these droplets land on surfaces and are then touched by others, such as a door handle and could potentially be spread. It is advised that people stay away from those who are sick by at least a personal space of three feet away.

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