There is a new epidemic that is scaring almost everyone. An epidemic that even doctors are afraid to tackle. This disease is no respecter of persons. That disease is the coronavirus. The new coronavirus has been the talk lately. A strain of virus that is sweeping across China and spreading to other parts of the world. Due to the spreading of the virus, it was declared as a public health emergency by World Health Organization (WHO).
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that are common in many different species of animals. Rarely does the animal coronavirus infect people. However, the most current strain is a new respiratory virus identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province and China, which has been infecting people.
Common signs of the infection include respiratory symptoms like fever, cough, shortness of breath and difficulty breathing. Rarer, more severe cases can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and in most extreme cases death. The symptoms may appear in as few as two (2) days or as long as fourteen (14) days after exposure.
How to protect yourself
While there are currently no vaccines to prevent the spread of the virus, reducing the risks of transmission are still possible. According to Dr. Eric Cioe-Pena , hand-washing and being mindful of contact with a person’s face is the best protection. The most common way viruses like these are spread is from droplets that land on a surface that a person touches and then spreads usually by touching their face or eating.
Below are examples of practices to reduce your risks of being infected;
• Washing of the hands often for at least 20seconds with soap and water is recommended. An alcohol -based sanitizer can work in the absence of soap and water.
• Avoid touching of the eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
• Cover your mouth when coughing, or sneeze with a tissue and dispose it off properly.
• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
• Avoid crowded places as much as possible.
• Avoid unnecessary contact with animals.
Thankfully, the only two suspected cases of the coronavirus in Ghana were negative. It is important that we take this opportunity to learn as much about this deadly virus to know how to tackle it . Be protected and ensure that you practise proper personal hygiene.