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Corona Virus information

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses, with some causing less severe disease, like the common cold.

Corona Virus information and assistance

At present the mortality rate is about 11% (Ebola for example is about 50%). Incubation period unknown, but probably 2-4 days. Unfortunately CORONA appears to be infectious throughout the contamination period of two weeks. This is very bad from a virological-spread point of view.

There are RUMOURS that the virus “escaped a lab” in China, but this is unconfirmed. It is a virus that originated in animals, however, and crossed the species gap (same as AIDS) which is always bad for humans. Due to the nature of the Chinese Communists Party, it appears that the outbreak in China is in fact far worse than what is being officially reported, – also remember it spreads before symptomization. Some schools eg in Hong Kong and Vietnam have been temporarily shut down, and schools in SE Asia are monitoring the situation.

If this hits SA (which is probable) the best is to avoid public areas and close contact, and wear a mask, which is FAR from perfect, but some form of protection.

Symptoms of SARS
In general, SARS begins with a high fever (temperature greater than 100.4°F [>38.0°C]). Other symptoms may include headache, an overall feeling of discomfort, and body aches. Some people also have mild respiratory symptoms at the outset. About 10 percent to 20 percent of patients have diarrhea. After 2 to 7 days, SARS patients may develop a dry cough. Most patients develop pneumonia.

How SARS spreads
The main way that SARS seems to spread is by close person-to-person contact. The virus that causes SARS is thought to be transmitted most readily by respiratory droplets (droplet spread) produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Droplet spread can happen when droplets from the cough or sneeze of an infected person are propelled a short distance (generally up to 3 feet) through the air and deposited on the mucous membranes of the mouth, nose, or eyes of persons who are nearby. The virus also can spread when a person touches a surface or object contaminated with infectious droplets and then touches his or her mouth, nose, or eye(s). In addition, it is possible that the SARS virus might spread more broadly through the air (airborne spread) or by other ways that are not now known.

What does “close contact” mean?
In the context of SARS, close contact means having cared for or lived with someone with SARS or having direct contact with respiratory secretions or body fluids of a patient with SARS. Examples of close contact include kissing or hugging, sharing eating or drinking utensils, talking to someone within 3 feet, and touching someone directly. Close contact does not include activities like walking by a person or briefly sitting across a waiting room or office.

written by Jeremy Dyer utilising a number of references

CORONA virus update

The Novel coronavirus (2019-nCov) is a new strain of coronavirus. Much is unknown about how it spreads, and current knowledge is assumed from similar coronaviruses.  It is a droplet-airborne, repiratory virus, similar to a cold/flu that starts in the upper respiratory tract and spreads to the lower tract. So far it is believed to have an 11% mortality rate, but prognosis is far better with treatment. The incubation period is 2-14 days, during which time the patient is infectious. Generally the patient remains infectious for about a week after the presentation of symptoms. Recovery time may be up to 8 weeks. Immune compromised or weak people are at greater risk.

There are strong rumours emerging from China that the extent of infection and death is far greater than officially reported. The virus has already spread to a limited extent worldwide, but the fear is if it reaches epidemic proportions in whichever country one personally resides. Though top laboratories around the world are working determinedly on a CORONA virus vaccine, this takes time. So…

What to Do About Coronavirus?

There is no vaccine yet for coronavirus. To help avoid a coronavirus infection, take the same steps as you would to try and avoid a common cold:

1. Wash your hands regularly throughout the day, as doctors normally do
2. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
3. Avoid contact with people who are sick.

If you are still worried, you should wear a mask in public, and avoid people in general, especially groups, such as movie theatres. Interestingly most viral diseases are spread via the schools and educational institutions for obvious reasons. Patients managed at home are encouraged to self-isolate to a single area of the house (preferably with a separate bathroom) and to wear a face mask during any contact with household members.

Though these steps will not guarantee your safety, they will improve your chances of remaining unaffected.

Two big questions many people have are: Will wearing a face mask keep us safe? And if so, what kind? A face mask will provide some, limited protection. A surgical face mask is best, and make sure you have the best fit possible around your mouth and nose. Properly dispose of the mask and put on a new one anytime someone coughing or sneezing around you contaminates it.

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