Coronavirus Transmission: How to Avoid It
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Coronavirus transmission can occur from person to person, as well as from animal to person. Therefore, it is important that preventive measures be taken, such as hand washing, avoiding contact with people who may be infected and avoiding closed environments and with many people.
What is Coronavirus?
Coronavirus is a family of viruses responsible for respiratory disorders, mainly the flu. However, when the coronavirus is transmitted from an animal to a person, the symptoms of the infection are more severe. And there may be respiratory failure, mainly in individuals who already have a compromised immune system, as it is the case with the type of coronavirus discovered nowadays, called COVID-19.
Different types of Coronaviruses
There are different types of coronaviruses that can affect both people and animals. Coronaviruses affect humans that have caused different epidemics like the current one Covid-19.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO) and the National Library of Medicine of the United States, the following outbreaks have occurred:
1. SARS (Severe and Acute Respiratory Syndrome): It is a severe and sometimes fatal respiratory disease. It was first discovered in China in
2002 and spread throughout the world. An international effort helped contain it quickly. No new cases have been reported anywhere in the world since 2004.
2. MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome): It is a severe respiratory disease discovered in Saudi Arabia in 2012. The disease has spread to 27 countries. Only two cases have been registered in the United States. All have been linked to travel or reside in or around the Arabian Peninsula.
3. COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019): It is discovered at the end of 2019 in the city of Wuhan, the Chinese province of Hubei. Most infections have occurred in China or are related to travel from Hubei province. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) are closely monitoring this outbreak and are giving directions to governments to act in airports and hospitals. [Information Source: https://medlineplus.gov/lab-tests/coronavirus-testing?
How the transmission occurs?
Coronavirus transmission occurs very easily. It can be transmitted through contact with animals or people infected by the virus. In the case of Transmission between people, infection by the virus can occur through the inhalation of drops of saliva and respiratory secretions that are present in the air when the person infected by the virus speaks, coughs or sneezes.
In the case of the new type of circulating coronavirus COVID-19, several cases of infected people have been confirmed. So, World Health Organization (WHO)
declared a state of international emergency, having to adopt new measures to avoid spreading the virus.
Also, transmission can occur even if the person has no symptoms, that is, during the incubation period, which corresponds to the period in which the virus multiplies in the body.
How to prevent the spread of coronavirus?
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water, mainly after coming into contact with people who suffer from the virus or suspect it.
- Avoid closed environments and with many people, in these environments the virus can spread more easily and reach a greater number of people.
- Wear personal protective masks to cover the nose and mouth and prevent both transmission and infection. In regions with a higher risk of infection and for health professionals who take care of people with suspected coronavirus, the use of N95, N100, FFP2 or FFP3 masks is recommended.
- Avoid contact with wild animals or that appear to be sick, since transmission can occur between animals and people.
- Avoid sharing of personal items that may contain drops of saliva, for example, cutlery and glasses.
To Wear a Mask or Not to Wear a Mask - that is the question
The decision to wear a mask is a big talking point right now. The Twitter thread linked below gives some more context around the debate, if you're interested.
In addition, as a way to prevent Coronavirus transmission, WHO is developing and implementing measures to monitor suspicion and cases of coronavirus infection
, so that the virulence of the virus and the transmission mechanism are addressed.
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