What is Corona Virus Disease 2019?
In the midweek of December 2019, the new strain of coronavirus was discovered in Wuhan, China. Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that causes illness. It ranges from a common cold or flu-like symptoms to severe diseases such as MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV. The 2019 strain of coronavirus started in the province of Wuhan, Hubei, China. The virus can be transmitted among people and can spread fast. The infected patients are cared and cured in an isolation process. The new strain of Coronavirus has become pandemic in less than 3 months.
Why is it called Coronavirus disease?
The virus is named from its microscopic appearance that looks like a crown. The World Health Organization announced its official name which is the COVID-19. This was named for its genetic structure to simplify the development of medicine and vaccines. The Coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 is now spreading widely in the most country around the globe.
How does the Coronavirus spread?
The COVID-19 can spread from one person to the other through respiratory droplets. The respiratory droplets are produced by coughing and sneezing. It can also spread through close contact with one another. An infected individual must be subjected to self-isolation and emergency medical attention. The person who is more symptomatic is considered as very contagious.
The spread of the coronavirus has spread widely especially in the US. The latest record of the infected population has already reached 40,000 people. Testing kits and implementation may delay but you can still prevent yourself from acquiring the virus. As the number of confirmed cases increases, the officials have ordered residents to stay at home.
Strategic planning in case of an outbreak of COVID-19 in your area
- Meet or gather your family member to plan as on. Talk about your basic needs and other important matters during an emergency.
- If you have people at a higher risk, ask their doctor what to do.
- Stay in touch or connected to the news and updates about the virus.
- Start to find community or source of goods, healthcare, delivery and food supplies in case of an outbreak or lockdown.
- Create an emergency contact list such as hospital, police station and local health department.
- You can also choose a room or empty one room in your house. This is for someone who might get sick or exposed to the virus. This room will be your quarantine or isolation area.
How will you protect yourself and others from the COVID-19?
- Wash your hands properly after holding things
- Use disinfecting bleach, alcohol or other disinfectants
- Stay at home especially if you live in the center point of the outbreak
- Avoid touching your mouth, use and eyes with an unwashed hands
- Distance yourself from other people especially if you feel unwell
- Stay at home if you are sick and wear a facemask
- Clean and disinfect your place from time to time
- If you experience most of the symptoms you have to go to emergency right away
- Avoid touching surfaces especially when you are in public places
- Avoid social gatherings if it is necessary
- Get notified by the news and public health announcements
- You can also dilute a disinfectant bleach or soap if there is no available alcohol
What are the symptoms of the COVID-19?
The occurrence of the virus may appear after 2 weeks of exposure. These symptoms may come mild or serious. These are:
- Difficulty breathing
- Aches and pains
Other early symptoms to watch for are:
- Body aches
- Sore throat
- Runny nose
- Severe Muscle pain
Can someone who has been quarantined for COVID-19 spread the illness to others?
The purpose of undergoing a quarantine period is to avoid the spread of the disease. However, this does not mean that the virus is already dead. The virus can still spread if the process of quarantine is not proper and safe. Quarantine is just a way to incubate the infected person and allowing the disease or virus to die. The COVID-19 patient must be quarantined for a period of 2 weeks. In this period, the infected patient undergoes observation, treatment and proper care.
Will warm weather stop the outbreak of the COVID-19?
The condition of the temperature has no confirmed record that it kills the virus. There is other viral illness such as cold and flu that spreads even in warm weather. The transmission and spread of this new strain of coronavirus are still under observation. Hence, the most common way of spreading this virus is through direct contact because of the respiratory droplets from an infected individual. Take note that the coronavirus has poor survivability in surfaces especially if it is travelled. This means that package from other places is not a carrier of the virus.
What can you do if you are at high risk of the virus?
Stock up on supplies and take everyday precautions. Keep space between yourself and others especially if you go out in public places. Stay at home if there is already an outbreak in your community. Check your body temperature from time to time or watch for any symptoms. Take a bath before going to bed especially if you are taking care of sick people. Always wear a facemask if you are a healthcare professional. Do not take the recommendations and advice of your doctor for granted.
What if you have close contact with someone who is infected with the COVID-19?
- You must monitor yourself within 14 days and inform your doctor right away
- Stay in one room for self-quarantine for about 2 weeks
- Household members should stay in another room away from you or anyone who has the symptoms of the virus
- Use the separate bathroom, bedroom, and dining plates during the quarantine period
- Perform hand hygiene frequently. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
- Prohibit visitors from visiting especially if there is nothing important
- Dispose of the used gloves, facemask, empty water bottles and other used hygienic kits properly
How can people help stop stigma related to COVID-19?
- Trust in the healthcare system– Health workers and other front liners of the disease are doing their best. You can avoid or stop the stigma by following rules that are implemented by authorities. Through this, you can give a big help to defeat the virus.
- Follow advice- Listening to instruction and advice makes you safe from the virus. Follow the advice from the authority and beware of fake news. Respect and empower people in all means. Remember that words have the power to influence others. Communicate, support and encourage others as well to do the same.
- Be responsible- you can do your part in countering the virus even in your small way. Ensure that you are neutral from any issues concerning rules and prohibition form the authorities. Promote basic information, steps and way of preventing the virus in your own way.
- Have a healthy lifestyle- avoid foods that have low nutritional levels such as processed foods. Go for the foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C. boost your immune system so that your body has enough strength to fight the attack of the virus.
Are people with disabilities at higher risk?
People with or without disability will be put at risk to the virus if you are irresponsible enough to follow guidelines. Promote the importance of prevention and lifesaving actions instead of putting other people at risk. The COVID-19 can spread and infect even the wealthiest person on earth.
Who are at higher risk of COVID-19?
Aside from exposure or direct contact to an infected person, people of the elderly population are at high risk. If you have underlying conditions, existing diseases you belong to the elderly population you have to take care of. The favourite place or host of the virus are those that have a weak immune system and those who have diseases. People with heart disease, lung disease or diabetes must be cautious especially during this outbreak.
You have to wear a facemask and other protective kits as much as possible. The most important thing you can do to be safe is to stay at home. People with underlying condition must undergo laboratory check-up and medical assessment. This is important especially if they are exposed to infected patients or other people with symptoms.
Know the severity of the impact of the illness to be able to plan the means in controlling them. Talk to a health care provider if you have further concerns. If you are one of the elderly with underlying conditions, you have to let yourself be assessed by your doctor right away. You can also take steps to boost your immune system.
People that are at the high-risk of the COVID-19
- Those who just undergo an organ transplant
- People that as blood cancer or bone marrow diseases
- You are also at risk if you are still in between treatment of cancer
- You are at risk if your body has a weak immune system
- You also have to be careful if you have lung or respiratory illnesses
- You are also at risk if you have smoking and drinking vices
How can you prepare yourself from COVID-19 at work?
The same precautions as you were in public places. Follow the basic emergency guidelines that are set by your employer. Always disinfect your hands with water and soap. You can also bring a 70% alcohol solution for handwashing. Avoid touching surfaces or getting near to other people. Practice proper social distancing as much as possible. Clean computer keyboards, telephones and even the chair.
COVID-19 and Pregnant Women
The data of COVID-19 to pregnant women are limited. However, at present, there is no record yet that pregnant women are the risk to the virus. The changes in the hormone and body of pregnant women must be given attention. This is because respiratory infection might cause danger to the Fetus as well as to the mother. Take precautions to protect pregnant women from the COVID-19. Pregnant women can also protect their self by following the basic guidelines to hygiene and disinfecting.
COVID-19 and Children
There are no records yet about the possible risk of children to the virus. However, you have to give attention to your kids especially if you are in the center point of the outbreak. Children do not appear to be at risk than the elderly population. Let them practice preventive measures such as handwashing habits. Allow them to wear a facemask if it is needed. Monitor the foods they eat and their daily activities.
You can also protect your children by cleaning and disinfecting the surfaces that they usually touch. Clean their toys, bedroom and the kitchen wares intended for them. Let your kids stay at home and do not bring them to grocery shops or other errands. You have to also check their temperature from time to time for preventive measures.
COVID-19 to Animals/Pets
Pets and animals have other strain of coronavirus that makes them sick as well. The COVID-19 as of now has no recorded transmission from people to animals. For now, they are safe as long as their environment is safe. Animals an also spread other diseases to people that is why you have to set boundaries for them. If you feel symptoms of COVID-19 r you are infected it is better to stay away from your pets.
Cases and latest updates about the COVID-19
The COVID-19 is now considered as a global health emergency. It has shaken off businesses, economic stability, health and other basic foundation of the country affected. Medical professionals are aggressively responding to the global outbreak of COVID-19. The community spread in the United States are given full attention by the authorities.
Everyone is still advised to stay at home to avoid possible contact with infected people. There are also medicines that are under several laboratory trials right now. These medicines have seen the potential to fight against certain viruses. While waiting for the antidote of the virus you have to take part in the worldwide fight against the COVID-19.