The Coronavirus outbreak is currently making headlines all over the world. Luckily it has not spread worldwide and killed millions, but there’s a very slight chance that this could happen in the near future.
Here are 10 Facts You Should Know About the Coronavirus
1. Coronaviruses are actually group of viruses that cause diseases in mammals and birds
In humans, the viruses cause respiratory infections – including the common cold – which are typically mild. Rarer forms such as SARS, MERS and the novel coronavirus can be lethal.
2. In December 2019 a new Coronavirus, designated 2019-nCoV, was identified in Wuhan, China
Wuhan is the capital city of China’s Hubei province. This happened after 41 people developed pneumonia without a clear cause. This is a new strain that has not been previously been identified in humans. Little is known about it, although human-to-human transmission has been confirmed.
3. The name “Coronavirus” is derived from the Latin corona
Corona means crown or halo. It refers to the characteristic appearance of the virus particles. They have a fringe reminiscent of a royal crown or of the solar corona.
4. You can’t get the virus from drinking Corona
There are actually some people who think that that this the Coronavirus is related to the Mexican beer brand Corona. It’s not.
5. More than 24,500 cases have been reported worldwide
Most of them are in China’s Hubei province. A man from Wuhan died in the Philippines on 2 February 2020 and Hong Kong reported its first death on 4 February 2020. Nearly 500 people have been killed so far.
The virus has spread to many Asian countries, as well as Australia, Europe, North America and the Middle East. The majority of cases outside China are among people who recently travelled there.
6. There are various Coronavirus symptoms
According to the World Health Organisation, signs of infection include fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties.
In more severe cases, it can lead to pneumonia, SARS, kidney failure and even death.
The incubation period of the Coronavirus remains unknown. Some sources say it could be between 10 and 14 days.
7. It’s likely that it’s not as deadly as SARS
Some scientists believe that the new Coronavirus is not as deadly as SARS. In case you forgot, SARS killed nearly 800 people worldwide in 2002-2003. More than 300 people died in China (where it originated).
MERS, which did not spread as widely, was more deadly, killing one-third of those it infected.
However, the new Coronavirus infection is more widespread than SARS in terms of case numbers in China.
8. Scientists are working on a Coronavirus vaccine
However, they have warned that one is unlikely to be available for mass distribution before 2021.
9. Measures have been taken to stop it from spreading
Chinese authorities have effectively sealed off Wuhan. They have placed restrictions on travel to and from several other cities. This has affected about 56 million people.
Many airlines have cancelled flights to China. Some countries have even banned Chinese nationals from entering and have evacuated their citizens from Wuhan.
10. There hasn’t been a confirmed Coronavirus case in South Africa
There hasn’t been a confirmed case, but at this stage a man with a high fever is being monitored in a hospital in Lephalale (in Limpopo province). The patient is a baggage handler at a cross-border checkpoint between Botswana and South Africa.
He was isolated for treatment on the 4th of February 2020. Both Namibia and Botswana have also put citizens in quarantine and are monitoring them.
Well, there you have it, 10 facts that you should know about the Coronavirus. I trust that you’ve found this info useful. If that’s the case, feel free to share this on your social profiles.
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