On the 31st of December 2019, Wuhan Municipal Health Commission, China was the first to witness the outbreak of the virus. Ever since, it has been spreading to other parts of the world becoming a pandemic.
The interesting thing about coronavirus is that its spread encourages social distancing which led to shutdown of financial markets, corporate offices, businesses, local and internation travel and events. The total shutdown of economic activities has left an enormous negative impact on the world’s economy.
To this effect, it is important to understand how the virus works and know how best to manage it.
WHAT IS COVID-19?
COVID-19 is the official name, a shortened version of Coronavirus Disease 2019. The World Health Organization refers to the specific virus that causes this disease as the Covid-19 virus.
This is not the formal name for the virus – the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses calls it the “severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2”, or SARS-CoV-2, because it is related to the virus that caused the SARS outbreak in 2003.
However, to avoid confusion with SARS the WHO calls it the covid-19 virus when communicating with the public.
The most common symptoms include a fever, dry cough and tiredness, and in mild cases people may get just a runny nose or a sore throat. In the most severe cases, people with the virus can develop difficulty breathing, and may ultimately experience organ failure.
HOW LONG COVID-19 TAKES TO SHOW SYMPTOMS
The following symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure.
HOW COVID-19 SPREADS
The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person. Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet). Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
Spread from contact with contaminated surfaces
It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
BASIC PROTECTIVE MEASURES
Take care of your health and protect others by doing the following:
- Wash your hands frequently
Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub kills viruses that may be on your hands
- Maintain social distancing
Maintain at least 1 metre distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
When someone coughs or sneezes they spray small liquid droplets from their nose or mouth which may contain virus. If you are too close, you can breathe in the droplets, including the COVID-19 virus if the person coughing has the disease.
- Avoid touching eyes,nose and mouth
Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and can make you sick.
- Practice respiratory hygiene
Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene. This means covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately.
- Seek medical care early if you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing.
Stay home if you feel unwell. Calling in advance will allow your health care provider to quickly direct you to the right health facility. This will also protect you and help prevent spread of viruses and other infections.
Quarantine separates and restricts the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick. These persons may have been exposed to the virus and do not know it, or they may have the disease but do not show symptoms.
If you traveled recently to a country with the COVID-19 outbreak in the last 14 days. it is advised that you quarantine for at least 14 days to be sure you are not infected.
- Follow the directions of your local health authority
National and local authorities will have the most up to date information on the situation in your area. They are best placed to advise on what people in your area should be doing to protect themselves.
NCDC Toll-free Number: 080097000010
To get all updates and resources on COVID_19Nigeria; visit covid19.ncdc.gov.ng
Note: Observing ALL precautionary measures is the ONLY way to reduce and totally eliminate the coronavirus.
STAY HOME! STAY HEALTHY!! STAY SAFE!!!
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