What Do We Know About The New Coronavirus So Far

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What Do We Know About The New Coronavirus So Far
What Do We Know About The New Coronavirus So Far

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What do we know about the new coronavirus so far

To date, the new coronavirus, according to official figures, has infected nearly 600 people and killed 17. From the Chinese city of Wuhan, it has spread to several countries on two continents. Let's figure out what is known today about the new infection, how to recognize and prevent it.

What do we know about the new coronavirus so far
What do we know about the new coronavirus so far

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To date, the new coronavirus, according to official figures, has infected nearly 600 people and killed 17. From the Chinese city of Wuhan, it has spread to several countries on two continents. Let's figure out what is known today about the new infection, how to recognize and prevent it.

What is this virus?

The new virus belongs to the coronavirus family, it was named 2019-nCoV. Its “relatives” cause common acute respiratory viral infections and more serious illnesses - severe acute respiratory syndrome (“atypical pneumonia”) and Middle East respiratory syndrome. The source of the new virus is animals and, possibly, sea food. China's National Health Commission has confirmed the possibility of human-to-human transmission of the virus. Now it is believed that this path is not the main one.

Symptoms of the new coronavirus pneumonia

The incubation period of new coronavirus pneumonia is from 3 to 14 days, Rospotrebnadzor indicates. The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lists the following disease symptoms that doctors should be guided by when making a preliminary diagnosis:

Fever (high fever) or lower respiratory symptoms (such as cough and shortness of breath) after visiting Wuhan city in China within 14 days before symptoms appear, or close contact with someone under medical supervision for possible exposure to the virus 2019-nCoV.

  • Fever (high temperature) and lower respiratory tract symptoms following close contact with a person with virologically confirmed novel coronavirus pneumonia.

Close contact is defined by the CDC as being 180 centimeters away or in the same room as someone who is sick, or "direct contact with infectious secretions."

According to the WHO, a mild course of the disease can be accompanied by weakness, sore throat, nasal congestion, headache, and muscle pain.

Treatment for new coronavirus pneumonia

There is no specific treatment for the new coronavirus infection; a vaccine has not yet been developed. Usually the disease goes away on its own. Symptomatic therapy under the supervision of a physician is recommended, it is similar to the treatment of conventional ARVI.

According to American guidelines, for mild cases of the disease, it is possible to organize treatment at home.

How to protect yourself from the new coronavirus pneumonia

CDC recommends the following travel precautions:

Avoid contact with people who have symptoms of pneumonia or SARS (cough, runny nose).

  • Do not touch eyes, nose and oral mucosa with unwashed hands.
  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use hand sanitizers if possible.
  • Do not come into contact with animals or go to markets where they are sold.

Rospotrebnadzor has published travel precautions:

When planning foreign trips, clarify the epidemiological situation.

  • If possible, avoid public transport, places where a large number of people gather during an epidemic.
  • Wear respiratory protection (masks).
  • Wash hands with soap and water after visiting crowded places and before eating, or use antiseptic products, wet wipes with antimicrobial action.
  • Subject food products to mandatory heat treatment.
  • Do not visit markets where animals and seafood are sold.
  • Eat only thermally processed food, bottled water.
  • Do not visit zoos, cultural events involving animals.
  • At the first signs of the disease, seek medical help from medical organizations, do not allow self-medication.
  • When seeking medical help in the Russian Federation, inform medical personnel about the time and place of stay in the PRC.
  • How events developed

    The Chinese authorities informed the World Health Organization about the first cases of an unknown viral pneumonia on December 31, 2019. The information available in the early days made it possible to associate the disease only with a visit to a certain market in Wuhan and the transmission of infection to humans from animals. It was assumed that the disease spreads slowly.

    On January 9, Chinese scientists reported that a previously unknown type of coronavirus was causing the new disease.

    On January 13, the new disease was first detected outside China, in Thailand. The sick woman was a woman who came from Wuhan.

    On January 15, China's National Health Commission announced that the possibility of person-to-person transmission of the virus cannot be ruled out.

    On January 16, the first death was reported as a result of the novel coronavirus pneumonia.

    On January 20, scientists confirmed the possibility of human-to-human transmission of the 2019-nCoV virus.

    As of January 22, 571 cases have been confirmed, including 4 in Thailand and one each in Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and the United States. 17 deaths were recorded.

    It is assumed that the number of cases is higher. Many people have come into contact with the infected, but those with mild symptoms may not seek help. WHO and specialists from Imperial College London suggest that there may now be about 4,000 cases.

    Combating infection in the world

    Measures are being taken around the world to prevent the spread of the new 2019-nCoV coronavirus. The Chinese authorities have blocked transport links with the city of Wuhan. They urged the residents of the country not to visit Wuhan unnecessarily, and the residents of the city not to leave it. Disease monitoring and disinfection measures are being carried out in the country.

    Airports in many countries have introduced screening for passengers arriving from China. At Russian airports, such passengers undergo remote thermometry.

    WHO has sent out recommendations to all countries on the detection and prevention of new coronavirus pneumonia. Today, agency experts postponed consideration of the issue of whether an emergency should be declared in connection with a new infection due to lack of information.

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