Coronavirus Protecting Yourself And Others Around You



On 31 December 2019, WHO was alerted to several cases of pneumonia in Wuhan City, Hubei Province of China. The virus did not match any other known virus. This raised concern because when a virus is new, we do not know how it affects people.


One week later, on 7 January, Chinese authorities confirmed that they had identified a new virus. The new virus is a coronavirus, which is a family of viruses that include the common cold, and viruses such as SARS and MERS. This new virus was temporarily named “2019-nCoV.”



WHO has been working with Chinese authorities and global experts from the day we were informed, to learn more about the virus, how it affects the people who are sick with it, how they can be treated, and what countries can do to respond. 


Because this is a coronavirus, which usually causes respiratory illness, WHO has advice to people on how to protect themselves and those around them from getting the disease.


WHO’s standard recommendations for the general public to reduce exposure to and transmission of a range of illnesses are as follows, which include hand and respiratory hygiene, and safe food practices:

- Frequently clean hands by using alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water;

- When coughing and sneezing cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue – throw away the tissue immediately and wash hands;

- Avoid close contact with anyone who has fever and cough;

- If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing seek medical care early and share previous travel history with your health care provider;

- The consumption of raw or undercooked animal products should be avoided. Raw meat, milk or animal organs should be handled with care, to avoid cross-contamination with uncooked foods, as per good food safety practices.


Setting up clean air zones in common areas of your workplace or education institution could also help mitigate transmission of not only potential outbreaks of Coronavirus but also related illness such as common cold, influenza and measles.




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