Coronavirus (COVID-19)


Damaris Estrada, Writer

A new respiratory disease is striking many countries including the United States: COVID-19. This new strain of a coronavirus which started in Wuhan City China, is continuing to spread and affect many people across the world. Although some coronaviruses are common, this new strain has a twist which is not usually seen in other cases. This new strain is costing the lives of many.

Coronaviruses are normally made up of a large family of viruses that can infect mammals including humans according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Although some coronaviruses are commonly seen in humans, some are not. MERS,SARS, and the new COVID-19 are the three most uncommonly seen in humans and are also the most fatal types. These viruses are named after the crown like spikes on its surface. This new coronavirus (COVID-19) is one that is spiking concern. 

The Center of Disease Control and Prevention in China has confirmed that the new COVID-19 is more contagious than MERS and SARS. COVID-19 can be spread from person to person or by touching an infected surface. Human to human spread is said to occur through respiratory droplets from an infected person’s cough or sneeze, similar to the flu. If these droplets are inhaled by someone nearby, they are very likely to be infected according to the CDC.  Surface infection can be caused by someone touching an infected area with their hands, then coming in contact with their eyes, nose, or mouth. 

Although this virus is spreading and continuing to spread, there are many ways to prevent more spread and infection. Small things such as cleaning surfaces with antibacterial wipes and sprays, washing your hands properly and thoroughly, keeping your hands away from your face, and staying in when you feel sick can prevent spread. Common symptoms for this virus include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Symptoms appear in as few as two days or as long as fourteen days after you have been infected.

Death because of this virus is a big concern and fear worldwide. Death possibility increases once a person is 40 and older.  Most deaths from COVID-19 occur in people 80 and older. These deaths are likely to occur in older people, people with compromised immune systems, and a person with respiratory problems.

This virus has many questions behind it. COVID-19 continues to affect the world and spread in many countries at a frightening rate. Only time can tell whether or not this virus will be able to be contained, or escalate in severity. Daily updates on this virus can be found on the CDC’s and WHO’s website online.