The world continues to grapple with the newest virus outbreak known as coronavirus or COVID-19 infection. The deadly virus attack was initially reported in the Wuhan city of China in December 2019. Since then, the Chinese government and health officials have been working with global health experts and medical heads to contain the spread of the new COVID-19 virus.
Medical experts have been trying their best to track the virus spread and provide all-round support to countries all over the globe for protecting people and preventing the spread of the coronavirus outbreak. As the number of cases is rising steadily, it has cast a dark shadow of gloom and fear in the minds of people.
What you really need to know about the spread of COVID-19?
According to the World Health Organization reports from the period of December 2019 till January 2020, there have been almost 10,000 confirmed coronavirus cases and over 200 confirmed deaths. Out of these numbers, ninety-nine percent of the cases and deaths have happened in China.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC states that as many as 26 countries have reported to be dealing with confirmed COVID-19 cases. Most of the confirmed cases or patients have traveled from the epicenter of the outbreak i.e. China to different parts of the world.
Other Salient Features of the COVID-19 Outbreak
- 6 cases were reported in January 2020 in the United States and another 160 individuals are being observed for suspected coronavirus infection.
- Fresh COVID-19 global cases are being reported every day and numbers are likely to increase in the coming weeks
- It is also suspected that infected persons may spread the infection before they themselves get sick
- World citizens have been advised by medical experts to get reliable info about the virus and protect themselves accordingly.
- There are scores of sites providing misinformation, unfounded claims and wrongful conspiracy theories about the new virus.
- Social media sites have reported various wrong and misleading posts involving COVID-19. For example, a false post claiming that the US government has produced a vaccine for coronavirus, and this false post was supposedly shared by almost 5000 Facebook users.
- Another misleading video offers advice to prevent virus spread by altering your diet and avoiding ice creams and cold drinks
Reliable & Authentic Online Sources for COVID-19 Info
You may not get 100% correct information on coronavirus, but some websites are superior in providing useful and authentic information without misleading readers. Rely on those sites that back their claim with proof of scientific analysis and publishing details taken from genuine or certified portals.
Some certified portals have ironically added a myth buster page for the benefits of the online readers and to protect the interests of the general public. World Health Organization, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, NHS or National Health Service, FDA or Food and Drug Administration, and Medline Plus are some of the best online sources to get true info about the new virus.
Primary verified news outlets include The Washington Post and The New York Times in the United States, the Times of India in India and the Khaleej Times in Dubai.
Gathering online news and updates on coronavirus may be easy, but you need to use your discretion to get real info from genuine sites. Make sure to contact your physician if you have any viral symptoms like cough, cold, fever or shortness of breath. Your family doctor in Dubai may suggest a specialist visit if you have severe symptoms of a viral infection.
COVID-19 Travel Advice
- Avoid travel to China
- Maintain high standards of personal hygiene
- Carry your own water bottle and cutlery when traveling for work
- Use disposable face masks in crowded areas
- Wash your hands frequently otherwise use a good quality sanitizer
- Consult your doctor before traveling abroad
- Check your country's travel advisory rules before booking a foreign trip
It is advisable to remain cautious in these present times of peril. You can take some necessary steps by avoiding raw or undercooked animal-based food. Typical wet-markets wherein animals are regularly slaughtered and butchered also should be avoided. Similarly, do not eat oily foodstuffs and fast food that are available at open eatery stalls.
When meeting with new individuals, avoid close physical contact with strangers (refrain from hugging, kissing, and shaking hands). Do not touch stray animals. You can strengthen your body's immune system by eating healthy foods and nutrient supplements. Lastly, never take your health for granted, as the saying goes “the greatest wealth is health”.