The novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) responsible for the current epidemic of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) that originated in Wuhan, China in December 2019 has now spread to 155 countries outside of China.
SARS-CoV-2 is a betacoronavirus that infects humans and the disease presents mostly with fever, cough, and shortness of breath.
The epidemic can no longer be contained and is spreading around the world.
There are over 189k cases and around 7,500 deaths as of March 16th, 2020.
It is probable that the mortality of the virus if far lower than the reported rates, as is evidenced by the wide range in rates depending on the country, their testing strategies etc. The places where mortality rate is really high suggest either a major lack of testing or a health system that collapsed. In the US for example – until March 2nd, they had tested less than 500 people, and the death rate was around 7%. Seeing as how in places where there is a lot of testing (such as in South Korea), the death rate is around .06%.
It is also important to remember that the figures of casualties are looking at all cause mortality instead of attributable mortality and as a lot more people die with COVID-19 than of COVID-19.
It is vitally important to try to make it so that hospitals are able to do their jobs. Such epidemics cause a lot of additional stress on health systems, so it’s important to try to help keep them functioning so that they are still able to provide appropriate care to their regular patients.
During such outbreaks deaths from other causes often increase during this time as it is harder to deliver regular care.
Clean Hospitals team and partners
The Clean Hospitals academic staff is working tirelessly to fight this epidemic and to be a source of accurate and evidence-based information and recommendations.
Our industry members are also crucial in delivering much needed supplies and information during a time where there is a lot of panic and misinformation.
- Practice good hand hygiene and environmental hygiene.
- Don’t go to the ER in you have symptoms, call your local health authorities instead.
- Practice social distancing and only wear a mask if you are experiencing symptoms or taking care of someone who is infected.