CORONA VIRUS EPIDEMIC UPDATE
This post is an update and summary on the developing epidemic of corona virus respiratory disease in the province of Hubei in mainland China.
At – 8AM, CST, 02/03/2020 – there are 17,490 patients with this disease world-wide. 321 patients died. (2.1%). Nine (9) confirmed cases are in the U.S.
The province of Hubei is home to about 60 million people. They are all in “Lock Down”. That is about the population size of Italy. No travel in or out of the province is allowed.
The transmission of the virus from person to person is thought to be by droplets from cough or sneeze. Therefore, preventive mask wearing in public has become a requirement. Further observations suggest that the virus is also transmitted through fecal contamination of food and deficient personal hygiene.
As we reported earlier, a study in the prestigious British medical journal – The Lancet – estimated that about 75,815 people in Hubei are infected with Corona Virus.
In order to accommodate the isolation of the patients in the city of Wuhan, anew hospital was built from prefabricated materials in 8 days. It is staffed by 1,400 medical workers deployed by the military.
A shortage of protective masks was reported in the City of Wuhan and the province of Hubei.
More than 2,400 Hong Kong public hospital workers staged a strike on Monday morning after the top microbiologist agreed with their central demand that the government close border with mainland China.
THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION RECOMMENDATIONS TO HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS AND THE PUBLIC
The basic principles to reduce the general risk of transmission of acute respiratory infections include the following:
- Avoiding close contact with people suffering from acute respiratory infections.
- Frequent hand-washing, especially after direct contact with ill people or their environment.
- Avoiding unprotected contact with farm or wild animals.
- People with symptoms of acute respiratory infection should practice cough etiquette (maintain distance, cover coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues or clothing, and wash hands).
- Within healthcare facilities, enhance standard infection prevention and control practices in hospitals, especially in emergency departments.
I publish information about the Corona Virus respiratory disease based on credible medical sources and prime medical journals. Information on the morbidity and mortality of this epidemic disease is derived from sources in Hong Kong. Information originating inside the PRC is unverifiable.
Questions are welcomed.
Mandy Lender, MD