In late Dec., 2019, Chinese Health Authorities had been said to have treated the first dozen patients of the coronavirus, also known as COVID-19. The world was warned of a pandemic by Chinese doctor Li Wenliang. He believed that there was the possibility of an outbreak in China due to the patient report he received. He was punished for “making false comments on the internet.” Three months later COVID-19 has spread rampantly around the globe.
Due to the virus’s easy transmission among humans, dozens to hundreds of people are being exposed and coming into contact with the coronavirus every day. The number of cases increase exponentially: dozens become hundreds, and hundreds become thousands. Public events have been suspended, and universities are shutting down. The question is: how can you stay protected from the coronavirus?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), washing hands with soap, using hand sanitizer and avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth will decrease the chance of contracting the virus. Avoiding close contact with people who are sick and distancing yourself and other people will help prevent spreading the virus. The CDC also advises those who feel sick to stay at home. If you’re coughing and sneezing, be sure to cover your mouth and nose and throw tissues away. Wearing face masks also help prevent the spread of the virus and is the most effective when combined with alcohol.
It is also important to understand who is affected by the coronavirus and how dangerous it is to specific age groups. According to data provided by the CDC in China, more than 90 percent of cases reported in February were people between the ages of 30 and 79. Children who are infected by the virus have milder symptoms, sometimes not even displaying symptoms at all. The symptoms for coronavirus are similar to having a cold, including fever, a runny nose and dry coughing. According to Dr. Robert Murphy, the executive director of the Institute for Global Health, “As age goes up, the mortality rate goes up.”
Stock up on supplies. Local grocery stores are running out of water, toilet paper and hand sanitizer. Costco stores across California have been limiting quantities of these items sold per shopper. While people are split between whether it is necessary to spend hours in a line for supplies or if people are overreacting, it is always good to be prepared.
Dr. Li Wenliang had warned of the spread of COVID-19 as dozens experienced a strange new sickness, but those dozens have become hundreds, and those hundreds have become thousands. Learning ways to prevent being affected by the coronavirus and ways to protect yourself and your family are necessary.