Kailah Lee | Staff Writer
Photo Credit: Unsplash User Kelly Sikkema
Many have heard about the Coronavirus (CoV), a recent epidemic. What makes it even scarier is that there are hourly updates on how much the disease is affecting hundreds upon thousands of people with little information on the prevention of it.
According to Vox, the outbreak has reached more than 40,000 people and counting. Fortunately for us in the U.S., it hasn’t become as prominent of an issue as it is in China, but by no means should you take this virus lightly.
The coronavirus and similar strains such as mCov, SARS and MERS are known as zoonotic, which is a fancy word for being transmittable by humans and animals. Originally, this is how the disease came to fruition. As stated by numerous sources, SARS and MERS allegedly evolved from bats and civet cats to affecting humans. But 2019-nCov seems to be a mystery. This raises some concerns considering that government officials are known to experiment in laboratories. Just like AIDS began with human and animal contact, many conspiracies suggest otherwise.
With little information on this outbreak, questions are pouring from the public. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, a few symptoms begin with fever, cough and shortness of breath. In a previous report form The Lancet, more detailed symptoms such as fever, muscle pain, fatigue, headache and diarrhea have been seen. In extreme acute cases, pneumonia, kidney failure and death have occurred.
Deaths have occurred in China, and in little time, the infectious disease is spreading like wildfire.
“Is this the disease that is going to take us out and bring on the apocalypse like in Stephen King?” said Dr. James Peterson, a writer, educator and consultant in a STEM panel discussion.
To his credit, the public has no way of knowing what might come of it. It may seem a little cinematic, but with movies, history and research to suggest otherwise, it’s safe to be open-minded about the virus.
“You cannot believe everything you hear about it, but this virus is a serious threat to global humanity,” Peterson said.
With dangling research in multiple sources, there is no exact answer to our questions. The best thing we can do for ourselves is treat the disease as if it were flu or common cold.
World Health Organization international standards for preventing spread are regular hand washing, covering mouth—either by elbow or surgical mask while coughing and sneezing—and meticulously cooking most meats and eggs.