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What You Need To Know About Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Sneha Kishore

What You Need To Know About Coronavirus (COVID-19)

By now you have been hearing about Coronavirus everywhere. What is the backstory and how does this affect you? Here is everything you need to know.

Blood sample with respiratory coronavirus positive


This Coronavirus was first detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China and which has now been detected in 37 locations internationally, including cases in the United States. has been named “SARS-CoV-2” and the disease it causes has been named “coronavirus disease 2019” (abbreviated “COVID-19”).

On January 30, 2020 the WHO declared it a “public health emergency of international concern” (PHEIC).

Coronavirus is a large family of viruses that are found in many animal species including camels, cattle, cats and bats. Rarely animal coronaviruses can spread from animal to people and then from person to person as is the case of SARS-CoV-2.

Currently in the United States imported cases from travelers and person to person contact of household contacts of travelers from Wuhan are seen.

Commonly Asked Questions

How is it spread?

  • Person to person:
  • Close contacts (within 6 feet)
  • Respiratory droplets (coughing and sneezing), landing in the mouths and noses of people nearby and inhaled into the lungs.
  • Contact with infected surfaces:
    • Touching surfaces or objects that has the virus on it and then touching the mouth, nose, or eyes. This is not a main method of spread.

When does it spread?

  • Most contagious when person is the sickest
  • Spread may be possible before symptoms show
  • How easily can the virus spread?
  • Known to spread very easily.


  • Can vary from mild to severe fever, cough, shortness of breath.
  • The CDC believes that symptoms of COVID-19 may appear 2-14 days after exposure.

Prevention and Treatment:

  • The best way is to avoid exposure
  • Avoid close contact with those who are sick
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth
  • Stay at home when you are sick
  • Cover you cough or sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces

CDC’s Facemask Recommendations:

  • No recommendation for people who are well to wear a facemask.
  • Facemask should be word by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent spread.
  • Facemasks are crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of the sick.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not available use an alcohol based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Soap and water must be used if hands are visibly dirty.

Steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 if you are sick:

  • Stay at home except to get medical care.
  • Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home.
  • Call your doctor ahead of time if you are suspecting COVID-19. This is to allow them time to take steps to keep other people from getting infected or exposed.
  • Wear a facemask
  • Clean your hands often
  • Avoid sharing personal household items
  • Clean all high touch surfaces everyday
  • Monitor your symptoms
  • Seek prompt medical care if symptoms worsen, and again wear a facemask and call your care provider ahead of time. If using emergency services, make sure to inform them as well so that they may take appropriate steps.

Discontinuing home isolation:

  • When risk of secondary transmission is thought to be low.
  • The decision is on a case by case basis in consultation with health care providers and state and local health departments.

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