201920 coronavirus pandemic is an ongoing pandemic of
coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute
respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).
The outbreak was first identified in Wuhan, Hubei, China, in
December 2019, and was recognized as a pandemic by the World
Health Organization (WHO) on 11 March.
As of 28 March 2020, more than 622,000 cases of COVID-19 have
been reported in over 190 countries and territories, resulting
in approximately 28,800 deaths.More than 137,000 people have
Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that typically cause respiratory
symptoms.that range from the common cold to MERS (Middle East Respiratory
Syndrome) coronavirus, and SARS (Severe acute respiratory syndrome)
There are many types of human coronaviruses including some that
commonly cause mild upper-respiratory tract illnesses. COVID-19
is a new disease, caused be a novel (or new) coronavirus that has
not previously been seen in humans.
A novel coronavirus is a new coronavirus that has not been previously
identified. The virus causing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19),
is not the same as the coronaviruses that commonly circulate among
humans and cause mild illness, like the common cold.
There are no specific treatments or cure for coronaviruses, but
symptoms can be treated.
do they spread?
Corona viruses can circulate between animals and some of these coronaviruses
have the capability of transmitting between animals and humans.
This is known as a spillover event.
The first infections of Covid-19 were linked to a live animal market
in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China but the virus is now spreading
from person-to-person. Its important to note that some viruses
like Covid-19 are highly contagious while others are less so.
Coronaviruses are generally thought to be spread from person-to-person
through respiratory droplets passed between people who are in close
contact with one another (within about 2 metres) produced when an
infected person coughs or sneezes.
These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are
nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
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.
In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses
on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from contaminated
surfaces. Howver, Covid-19 appears to be able to survive on surfaces
for longer periods than other coronaviruses. Further reseach is
required to confirm this.
Currently there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19
associated with food. Before preparing or eating food it is important
to always wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds for
general food safety. Throughout the day wash your hands after blowing
your nose, coughing or sneezing, or going to the toilet.
At this time,there is no evidence to suggest that this new coronavirus
or other similar coronaviruses are spread by mosquitoes or ticks.
Can Live On Surfaces For 3 Days - New Research Reveals
(COVID-19) is primarily a respiratory illness, and it typically
spreads in the air from an infected persons cough or sneeze.
study from the Nation Institutes of Health (NIH) suggests
the Coronavirus can last between three hours and three days
on surfaces, depending on the material and temperature.
authored by researchers at the National Institutes of Health
(NIH) suggests the virus can live up to four hours on copper,
up to a day on cardboard, and up to three days on plastic
and stainless steel. The Coronavirus can also live in the
air for up to three hours.
pandemic (March 2020) has led to severe global socioeconomic disruption,
the postponement or cancellation of sporting, religious, and cultural
events, and widespread fears of supply shortages which have spurred
panic buying amongst the public.
Misinformation and conspiracy theories about the virus have spread
online, and there have been incidents of xenophobia and racism against
Chinese and other East and Southeast Asian people.
is at risk?
everyone is at risk of contracting the virus since it is a new strain
and there has yet no natural immunity developed. COVID-19 is a new
disease and there is limited information regarding risk factors
for severe disease.
Many people who are infected suffer nothing more than mild flu-like
However some people are at greater risk than others. Based
upon available information to date, those at high-risk for severe
illness from COVID-19 include:
70 years and older.
live in a nursing home or long-term care facility.
chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma.
have heart disease with complications.
are immunocompromised including cancer treatment.
any age with severe obesity (body mass index [(BM]I)=40) or
certain underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well
controlled, such as those with diabetes, renal failure, or liver
disease might also be at risk.
are pregnant should be monitored since they are known to be
at risk with severe viral illness, however, to date data on
COVID-19 has not shown increased risk.
Efforts to prevent
the virus spreading include travel restrictions, quarantines, curfews,
workplace hazard controls, event postponements and cancellations,
and facility closures. various border closures or incoming passenger
restrictions, screening at airports and train stations, and outgoing
passenger travel bans.Schools and universities have closed in more
than 124 countries.
to protect yourself from getting coronaviruses.
There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019
The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this
The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-perso between
people who are in close contact with one another (within about 2
Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs
or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people
who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
Clean your hands often; Wash your hands often with soap and water
for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public
place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
hand hygiene, such as washing your hands with soap and water and
respiratory hygiene, such as when you sneeze, sneezing into your
elbow. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer
that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands
and rub them together until they feel dry.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Put distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading
in your community. This is especially important for people who are
at higher risk of getting very sick.
dangerous id Covid-19?
is no doubt that coronavirus can be lethal. There have already been
thousands of deaths due to coronavirus worldwide and the
number of fatalities from the new coronavirus has overwhelmingly
surpassed the toll of the 2002-2003 SARS outbreak, which also originated
about 9 percent of those it infected - nearly 800 people worldwide
and more than 300 in China alone. MERS, which did not spread as
widely, was more deadly, killing one-third of those infected.
While the new
coronavirus is more widespread than SARS in terms of case numbers,
the mortality rate remains considerably lower at approximately 3.4
percent, according to the WHO. The
elderly and the unwell are more likely to die, if they contract
estimates are that the death rate is almost 10 times higher than
average for those over 80, and much lower for those under 40. However,
The UK government's chief medical advisor, says even though the
rates are higher for older people, "the great majority of older
people will still have a mild or moderate disease".
warns that we should not think it's a trivial infection for younger
people, pointing out that there are some young people who have ended
up in intensive care. It's not just age that determines the outcome
The first big
analysis of more than 44,000 cases from China showed that death
rates were at least five times higher among confirmed cases with
diabetes, high blood pressure or heart or breathing problems.
All of these factors interact with each other and there is no complete
picture of the risk for every type of person in every location.
And even though patterns in the death rates among confirmed cases
can tell us who is most at risk, they can't tell us about the precise
risk in any single group.
The UK government's
scientific advisers believe that the chances of dying from a coronavirus
infection are between 0.5% and 1%.
is lower than the rate of death among confirmed cases - which is
4% globally in WHO figures and 5% in the UK as of March 23 - because
not all infections are confirmed by testing.
has its own way of deciding who gets tested, so comparing case numbers
or apparent death rates across countries can also be misleading.
Most cases of most viruses go uncounted because people tend not
to visit the doctor with mild symptoms.
On 17 March
2020, the chief scientific adviser for the UK, estimated there were
about 55,000 cases in the UK, when the confirmed case count was
just under 2,000. Dividing
deaths by 2,000 will give you a much higher death rate than dividing
Most cases are never counted!
That's one of
the biggest reasons why the death rates among confirmed cases are
a bad estimate of the true death rates: overestimating the severity
by missing cases.
are the symptoms of coronavirus?
illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death
for confirmed (COVID-19) cases.
symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure:
Some patients may also have a runny nose, sore throat, nasal congestion
and aches and pains or diarrhoea.
Some people report losing their sense of taste and/or smell.
About 80% of people who get Covid-19 experience a mild case
about as serious as a regular cold and recover without needing
any special treatment.
When to Seek Medical Attention
If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19 get medical
attention immediately. Emergency warning signs include*:
*This list is
not all inclusive.
If the disease
progresses it will be due to the immune system overreacting to the
virus causing inflammation, but this needs to be delicately balanced.
Too much inflammation can cause collateral damage throughout the
body. The virus is triggering an imbalance in the immune response,
causing too much inflammation.
Inflammation of the lungs is called pneumonia.In pneumonia the tiny
sacs where oxygen moves into the blood and carbon dioxide moves
out start to fill with water and can eventually cause shortness
of breath and difficulty breathing.
Some people will need a ventilator to help them breathe.
It is estimated around 6% of cases become critically ill. By
this point the body is starting to fail and there is a real chance
is the immune system is now spiralling out of control and causing
damage throughout the body.
It can lead
to septic shock when the blood pressure drops to dangerously low
levels and organs stop working properly or fail completely.
distress syndrome caused by widespread inflammation in the lungs
stops the body getting enough oxygen it needs to survive. It can
stop the kidneys from cleaning the blood and damage the lining of
virus sets up such a huge degree of inflammation that you succumb...
it becomes multi-organ failure,dy
where it can cause even more damage.
And if the immune system cannot get on top of the virus, then it
will eventually spread to every corner of the body where it can
cause even more damage.
Treatment by this stage will be highly invasive and can include
ECMO or extra-corporeal membrane oxygenation. This
is essentially an artificial lung that takes blood out of the body
through thick tubes, oxygenates it and pumps it back in.
the damage can reach fatal levels at which organs can no longer
keep the body alive.
Should I be
Yes, because nobody knows who are going to be in the 6% of patients
who become critical. If you have one or more of the underlying risks
mentioned earlier, there is even greater cause for concern.
This is one disease that you don't have to travel abroad to encounter.
Since January of 2020 when it was first mentioned in the media as
being in China it has spread to vitually every country worldwide
in a couple of months.
The British Government
has published a huge amount of information for travellers on line:
For the latest information regarding foreign travel and returning
to UK from abroad you should visit the Foreign and Commonwealth
Office web site at: