Coronaviruses belongs to a group of respiratory viruses well-recognized by its sun or crown-like shape when viewed under an electron microscope.
Several strains of Coronavirus exist, mostly among animals. However the novel coronavirus such as SARS-CoV-2 the virus strain that causes COVID-19, is contagious to humans.
Symptoms range often from mild to moderate, with reported similarities to a cold or flu. This includes a fever, cough or dry cough as well as difficulty breathing.
Other symptoms continue to be reported as the virus continues to affect people in different ways, and may or may not present itself until up to two weeks after transmission.
The Coronavirus (COVID-19) spreads most directly from person to person transmission.
Major modes of transmission include airborne and surface transmission. During airborne transmission tiny particles or droplets containing the virus can be emitted when talking, coughing and sneezing. While surface transmission can be multifactorial, from touching one surface from hand contract transmission onto the body when touching the face such as eyes, nose and mouth.
Everyone can be at risk of contracting COVID-19 through everyday activities that go unnoticed.
You can pass it on before ever showing or noticing any signs, such as asymptomatic and presymptomatic spread. There is also community spread, entering a contaminated space where the virus is discharged into the surrounding environment like an aerosol, and infecting those nearby.
Older people, and those with pre-existing health and medical conditions are at the highest risk and need vigilant support and protection from the greater community.
The following are helpful, preventative tips generally regarded by the WHO and the CDC:
- Maintain social distancing (6ft).
- Wash your hands often and thoroughly (20-30 seconds). Soap and dedicated scrubbing action has been shown to kill Coronavirus (COVID-19) on hands.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces with high touch points using an EPA registered household or medical grade disinfectant.
- Sanitize frequently used items such as coats, bags and technological devices on a frequent basis. Wait for the disinfectant to do its job.
- Catch coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues, or direct into your sleeve.
- Wherever possible wear gloves and a cloth mask or N95 respirator when you are outside or performing necessary errands such as driving, pumping gas and grocery shopping. Do not forget to dispose of or change your PPE equipment as necessary and required.
- Avoid sharing personal items such as towels, toiletry items, bed linens and other intimate household belongings.
- Maintain good nutrition and hydration, in addition to good regular personal hygiene and maintenance.
- Exercise precaution with packaging and handling, such as deliveries. Dispose of food and other waste in a timely and sanitary manner.
- Call if you are sick, and if urgent call 911. Stay safe and stay home as much as you can.