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Covid-19 Safety Measures
It is everywhere! You continuously hear about it, learn about it, read about it, but the fact is – we still know NOTHING about it! The corona virus disease or COVID-19, has shaken the world with its life-threatening spread. Because it is pandemic in nature and no proven cure as yet, Rocheston has brought out this handy COVID-19 Safety Measures for a quick read to protect yourself and those around you.
Video: How Does the Coronavirus Work?
What are the symptoms to look out for?
Klaus, the Global Medical Director for Infectious Diseases in Global Product Development Medical Affairs, has remarked that “considering the pandemic outbreak across the countries, it is important to understand how COVID-19 is different from the seasonal flu”.
Initially, the COVID-19 symptoms are similar to those of the seasonal flu and later on turns to be deadlier than the influenza:
Difficulty in breathing sometimes leading to breathlessness
Download Working Safely During Coved-19 Guidelines
The main thing to remember is that COVID-19 can turn out to be a normal flue in a person blessed with robust health and higher immunity levels. Therefore, it could just pass off as a seasonal cough or cold in such people.
However, it could also remain completely asymptomatic in most people for a period of 14 days! This is the reason medical experts across the globe emphasize on social distancing – staying away from others by maintaining at least a 2-meter distance.
Tips on How to Stay Safe
Stop the spread of germs and prevent the spread of respiratory diseases
Wash your hands with clean soap and water for at least 20 seconds
Use hand sanitizers when in public or touching anything
Avoid close contact with sick people
Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and throw it away safely to practice respiratory hygiene
Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces regularly used
Stay home as much as possible except in case of emergencies
Maintain social distancing
Avoid handshakes, kisses or hugs to avoid physical contact with anyone outside the house
Avoid crowds or large gatherings
Seek medical care if any of the flu symptoms persists for more than 2 days
Keep away from people who have recently travelled to or from outside the country
In case of people having a history of recent travels abroad, ensure self-isolation and quarantine of a minimum of 14 days as a preventive measure
Avoid self-medication in case of flu symptoms
Follow guidelines offered by the local government and the World Health Organization
What is the official name for COVID-19?
Since the corona virus has become a household name, it is important to know how viruses and their related diseases are named. It is common knowledge that it is the genetic structure of viruses that are the basis for their names. Naming them helps in scientifically diagnosing their strains, developing vaccines and medicines for their diseases.
The International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV), is the body authorized to identify and name the viruses and their diseases. WHO in coordination with ICTV facilitates the exchange of ideas about the disease information, their severity, symptoms and treatment options. WHO also officially places the information under the International Classification of Diseases – the ICD, before announcing the official name to the public.
The virus was announced by ICTV in February 2020 as “severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) or the 2019 novel coronavirus”. The disease is therefore named as COVID-19.
How does the virus spread?
Based on the initial research of the COVID-19, two main factors were observed for the spread of the disease:
Direct exposure to the Huanan market of Wuhan
Subsequently, since the disease and symptoms started spreading beyond national borders, health workers concluded that the spread is due to human beings as carriers and that it is the result of human-to-human transmission. Similar to other respiratory infections, cough or sneeze droplets are the virus holders. Prolonged exposure to aerosol concentrates in closed environments can be another cause of the spread. Close contact with symptomatic people is another cause for the spread. Researchers in China claim that the incubation time could be 3 - 7 days and infection spread could last for 2 weeks.
What happens when a person is infected by COVID-19?
As per the data available from authorized medical policy agencies, a person infected by COVID-19 will come under any one of the 3 categories:
Mild – light flu like symptoms, non-pneumonia symptoms
Severe – irregular respiratory frequency, irregular blood oxygen saturation ratio
Critical – severe pneumonia, sepsis, respiratory failure due to septic shock or even multiple organ dysfunction
COVID-19 infected people who fall in the critical category are classified as extremely serious leading to severe respiratory organs failure, renal impairment, multiple organ dysfunction/failure and also altered mental health status.
Who is at risk from Corona virus?
People with existing deteriorating health status and elderly people with known medical conditions, are considered to be in the vulnerable category.
Senior citizens above the age of 65 years are also vulnerable.
People living near a hospital or health care facility are in a risky zone.
Patients with chronic lung infection or wheezing are vulnerable too.
Diabetic and liver disease patients are asked to be careful and follow preventive measures.
Immunocompromised patients who are taking medication for cancer, bone marrow transplant, AIDS, or organ replacement surgery, are particularly vulnerable.
What is the role of WHO in creating awareness about COVID-19?
WHO has launched a dedicated messaging services in many international languages apart from English. It has with partnered with social media groups to keep people updated and send safety alert messages about the corona virus. WHO is directly able to extend the awareness and messaging service to about 2 billion people across the globe.
Various governments, global leaders and health workers are in constant interaction with WHO for the latest news and information including details on symptoms and how people can protect themselves against the virus. This is a huge advantage to help governments in decision-making while protecting the health of their people.
What are the findings from the basic research about the corona virus?
The research findings from health experts across the globe and the scientific understanding the COVID-19 virus is it is a variant of the SARS virus that rocked the world a decade ago and this is SARS-CoV-2. Initial research findings also suggested bats or pangolins could be the originators of the virus. Later research suggested that a genomic analysis of the virus resulted in the knowledge that it is a recombination between two different viruses. Therefore, it is not yet clear what exactly could be the origin of the virus.
What does the comparative genomic analysis data suggest?
Based on a comparative genomic analysis sequenced by Chinese researchers, it is seen that SARS-CoV-2 belongs to the group of “Betacoronaviruses”. It is the cause for severe pneumonia related diseases that was prevalent in the previous decade. The genome is a RNA molecule of thirty thousand bases including 15 genes. The S gene having protein code on the viral envelope is also found in among the 15 genes.
How can COVID-19 be treated?
As of today, there are no known established treatment options for COVID-19. No antibiotics seem to cure the disease. As a method of self-care option doctors suggest that people with the COVID-19 symptoms should be isolated and provided with plenty of liquids and kept warm. People with mild symptoms are advised to stay at home till recovery and have hot shower, good rest and sleep. Symptomatic treatment is what medical experts are administering COVID-19 patients currently. Oxygen therapy and mechanical ventilators are administered on a case-to-case basis with the intention of preventing respiratory infections. As per the WHO guidelines in the early 2020, the following treatment strategies may be followed to address the COVID-19 symptoms:
Early supportive therapy and monitoring
Guidelines for laboratory diagnosis
Management of respiratory failure and ARDS
Management of septic shock
Prevention of complications
Protective mechanical ventilation and high-flow nasal oxygen (HFNO) or non-invasive ventilation (NIV)
It is War
COVID-19 is a war waging against humanity at present and it is the collective duty of the people and governments to ensure that the catastrophic impact is reduced and lives are saved through proper awareness and medical care. Strictly following instructions provided by the medical authorities and WHO in these pandemic times, is the top priority. At Rocheston we will do everything we can to create more awareness among the people and educate the people about the safety measures to follow to save lives!
What are the safety measures to be taken in case of travel?
The pattern observed with the COVID-19 spread across the countries is that the virus infection spreads faster when people come in contact with those who have travelled to and from other countries. The reason is obvious because, more people gather and crowd at airports and railway stations where even one infected person could pass it on to several others there. The best preventive measures to be taken are:
Governments must ensure all passengers are screened at the arrival points for temperature and other flu-like symptoms
Isolate and accord medical attention to those people who show symptoms
Impose strict isolation and quarantine for passengers arriving from high-risk infection-prone countries
Create public awareness about the severity of the virus infection and educate people to report in case of anyone around them have had a recent travel
How does COVID-19 affect people across different age groups?
World over, there has been a consistent pattern in the way the corona virus is affecting the masses. The primary targets are those individuals with less immunity levels and existing respiratory or lungs related issues.
Another key observation made by the experts globally is that the virus seems to fatally impact the elderly – the senior citizens above the age of 65 years who would naturally have lesser resistance. Similarly, few cases of COVID-19 affecting infants and children below the age of 10 years has also been observed. Therefore, families with young children and old people must ensure that they are kept safe and not exposed to the virus by following all the safety measures.
How to Wash Hands?
The importance of washing hands with clean water can never be stressed enough. Hands are the first source of touch and can be the entry point for germs and viruses to the body. Using authorized hand sanitizers and thoroughly washing every inch of the fingers, nails, palms and base of the palm are essential. Ensuring that the hands are not just rinsed wet but well-cleaned for at least 20 seconds is the key to safe hands. Hand washing is a must before and after touching or eating anything.
Live Coronavirus Map
See Coronovirus mutations in a realtime. More than 2,000 genetic sequences of the virus have been submitted from labs around the world to the open database NextStain. The virus is mutating every 15 days. I am studying and analyzing the virus. Here is the database. Take a look.