FROM AN OUTBREAK TO A PANDEMIC: CORONA VIRUS DISEASE-19 (COVID-19)
This article takes you through every detail about the COVID-19 pandemic. Started from an outbreak in Wuhan, China, the virus has spread to over 200 countries developing into a pandemic.
We have put together everything like what is a coronavirus, coronavirus symptoms, diagnosis, treatment and everything you need to know.
What is COVID-19?
As per the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, Corona Virus Disease -19 or COVID-19 is a large family of viruses.
It is initially a respiratory infection that can occasionally take rare fatal forms.
The current strain, novel coronavirus is recognized as SARS-CoV-2, which is a new variation that was not identified before.
The virus originated in an animal and was transmitted to humans.
According to an analysis, the genetic sequence of COVID-19 was found to 96% identical to one coronavirus found in bats.
The WHO gave the name COVID-19 to prevent the names that can be inaccurate or stigmatizing.
According to Tedros, director-general of The WHO, “It also gives us a standard format to use for any future coronavirus outbreak.”
In COVID-19, CO stands for corona, V for the virus, D for disease and 19 representing the year of the discovery of the outbreak
From Where did Coronavirus (COVID-19) Originate?
According to reports and public health officials, the coronavirus outbreak started and spread from a meat market in Wuhan, China.
The name of the market was popular as the Huanan Wholesale Seafood Market.
In early December, people in mainland China were first infected by the virus.
An International Journal of Infectious Disease published research noted the epidemiological connection with the market of the initially infected individuals hospitalized.
Further researches noted that the virus might have originated somewhere else before being bought to the market.
However, the Seafood Market remains the origination epicenter of the Corona Virus.
How dangerous is the Corona Virus (COVID-19)?
The World Health Organisation considers COVID-19 as a serious illness and is more dangerous than flu.
In the initial stages of the outbreak, only 2 or 3 percent of the people who were infected died.
There are speculations that the figures might worsen as the outbreak progressive.
Different groups of people react differently to the viral. According to reports, coronavirus has been significantly causing the death of older people who have underlying health issues.
How is the Coronavirus Transmitted?
The positive cases studied have shown that the virus is mainly spread from person to person, i.e., community transmission.
Close contact with an infected person or respiratory droplets through coughing and sneezing inhaled can lead to illness.
People are considered to be most contagious when they show the symptoms of coronavirus.
However, the symptoms take time to develop and the virus could be spread before the symptoms are visible.
COVID-19 can also be transmitted from contact with contaminated surfaces or objects.
The virus can survive on such surfaces for a significant amount of time, therefore, posing the risk of spread if touched by an infected person.
What are Coronavirus Symptoms?
The initial symptoms of COVID-19 include dry cough, fever, weakness, and shortness of breath.
It is advised to seek medical attention when one experiences trouble breathing, chest pain, bluish face or lips and inability to arouse.
Medical advice is recommended in cases of contact with a suspected COVID-19 person, even if no symptoms are seen.
As opposed to a prevailing myth, the World Health Organisation stated that the symptoms usually do not include a runny nose.
The reported illnesses have shown mild symptoms to severe illness and death for the confirmed coronavirus disease cases.
The symptoms are usually visible within 2-14 days after exposure to the virus.
How to Prevent Coronavirus?
Experts and scientists across the world are working endlessly to develop a vaccine for COVID-19.
However, to prevent the infection certain measures can be taken to reduce the risk of illness.
- Avoid close contact with infected people
- Stay home
- Cover your mouth
- Keep frequently touched surfaces clean
- Wash hands frequently
How COVID-19 affect the Human body?
Once the Coronavirus enters the body, it begins infecting the epithelial cells in the lungs lining.
It has protein spikes that stick to the cell membrane allowing the virus’s genetic material to penetrate the cell. It begins to replicate until the cell dies.
The upper respiratory tract is initially affected which further moves to the windpipe and lungs. It causes respiratory problems like pneumonia and bronchitis.
Pneumonia leads to the damage of a thin layer of alveolar cells. With the advent of the immune cells, in the body, the layer thickens to heal blocking the air pockets in the lungs.
This eventually leads to failure or shortage of oxygen supply to other body parts. This could lead to organ failure and in worst cases to death.
Is there any Treatment or Diagnosis for Corona Virus?
As of now, there is no proven cure found for COVID-19. However, dozens of studies are underway to find a potential cure. Currently, no vaccine for COVID-19 is available as well.
However, coronavirus infected people have been recovering from the illness if diagnosed and treated at initial stages.
Know some Do’s and Don’ts
These dos and don’ts could help one to prevent getting infected from Coronavirus.
- Social distancing (6 feet away)
- Wash your hand frequently for 20 seconds
- Wear a mask and use sanitizer outside the home
- Healthy diet
- Keep your surroundings clean
- Check for myths and real facts
- Exercise and stay fit
- Stay at home for as long as you can
- Seek medical advice without delay when required
- Attend gatherings and crowded places
- Avoiding potential symptoms
- Get close to an ill or coughing person
- Going to public places like malls and gyms
- Not having updated and correct information
What is the current global situation of Coronavirus?
As of 27 March 2020, there are 503,216 confirmed cases of coronavirus worldwide. 22,340 confirmed deaths have been reported.
Also, 200 countries, areas or territories have reported cases of coronavirus positive patients. The figures are as stated by the World Health Organisation.
The most severely affected countries are Italy, China, The U.S., Spain, and Germany. Italy has surpassed China in most positive cases and death figures.
Countries are following The WHO guidelines and governments are adopting strict measures to combat the pandemic.
The world is locked down and companies have halted their processes to prevent community spread.
Funds and budgets of trillions of dollars have been proposed for medical studies and developing a cure for the virus.
Airlines have stopped operating and no country is allowing traveling outside or inside the territory.
Inter-territory activities have been ceased until further notice in most of the countries.
Moreover, countries with no positive novel coronavirus cases are taking strict actions to prevent the spread.
India has declared a complete lockdown for 21 days till 14 April.
The finance minister has declared a coronavirus relief fund of Rs. 107 trillion to ease the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
Hello! My name is Mansi Shrivastava who happens to have a knack for writing. It has not always been what I admired but developing into a writer was something I appreciate the most now. When not glued to the computer screen, I love to try my hand in arts and crafts. Also, binge-watching with a bowl of snacks has always been my thing.