COVID – 19
COVID-19 is a disease caused by a novel coronavirus now known as severe acute respiratory coronavirus 2 syndrome (SARS-CoV-2) that was first identified in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. It was first reported to the WHO on 31 December 2019, and was declared a global health emergency on 30 January 2020. On 11 March 2020, COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic by the WHO.
WHAT IS CORONAVIRUS?
Coronaviruses are a wide family of viruses that can cause animal or human illness. In humans, it is known that many coronaviruses cause respiratory infections ranging from the common cold to more serious diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). The most recent coronavirus discovered causes COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease)
WHAT IS COVID - 19?
COVID-19 is an infectious disease caused by a coronavirus that was most recently identified. This new virus and disease were unknown in December 2019, before the outbreak started in Wuhan, China. COVID-19 is now a pandemic which affects many countries worldwide
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF COVID - 19?
- Dry Cough
- Aches and Pains
- Nasal Congestion
- Sore Throat
- Loss of Taste or Smell
- Rash on Skin
- Discolouration of Fingers or Toes
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I HAVE COVID - 19 & WHEN SHOULD I SEEK MEDICAL CARE?
Whether you have mild symptoms such as cough or fever, you usually don’t need to seek medical attention. Remain at home, separate yourself and watch over your symptoms. When you live in an area with malaria or dengue fever, though, it ‘s important you don’t neglect fever symptoms.
Seek medical help. If possible, keep at least 1-meter distance from other people and do not touch surfaces with your hands when you attend the health facility to wear a mask. Help the child stick to this advice when it’s a child who is sick. If you have trouble breathing, or chest pain/pressure, seek urgent medical attention.
HOW DOES COVID - 19 SPREAD?
Others that have the virus will catch COVID-19. The disease spreads mainly through small droplets from the nose or mouth from person to person, which are expelled when a person with COVID-19 coughs, sneezes or speaks. These droplets are relatively heavy, they don’t travel far and they sink quickly to the ground. People can catch COVID-19 if a person infected with the virus breathes in those droplets. That’s why it is important to stay away from others at least 1 meter. These droplets can land around the person on objects and surfaces such as tables, doorknobs, and handrails. Through touching these objects or surfaces, people may become infected and then touch their eyes, nose or mouth. That’s why washing your hands regularly with soap and water or cleaning with alcohol-based hand rubbing is important
CAN COVID -19 BE CAUGHT FROM PERSON WHO HAS NO SYMPTOMS?
COVID-19 is transmitted primarily by respiratory droplets released by someone who coughs or has other symptoms such as fever or fatigue. Many people suffering from COVID-19 experience only mild symptoms. This is especially true in the early stages of illness. COVID-19 may be detected by someone who has only a slight cough and doesn’t feel sick.
HOW CAN WE PROTECT OURSELVES & OTHERS IF WE DON'T KNOW WHO'S INFECTED?
Practice hand and respiratory hygiene at all times is essential and is the best way to protect others and yourself. When necessary, keep a distance of at least 1 meter between yourself and others. This is particularly important if someone who is coughing or sneezing is standing by. Because some affected individuals may not yet have symptoms or their symptoms may be mild, it is a good idea to maintain a physical distance from others if you are in an environment where COVID-19 circulates.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I HAVE COME IN CONTACT WITH SOMEONE WHO HAS COVID - 19?
If you don’t live in malaria or dengue fever area please do the following:
- If you become ill, you must isolate yourself even if you have very mild symptoms and if you do not think you were exposed to COVID-19 but you experience symptoms, then isolate yourself and control yourself.
- In the early stages of the disease, you are more likely to infect others when you just have mild symptoms, therefore early self-isolation is very important.
- If you do not have symptoms but have been exposed to an infected person, self-quarantine for 14 days.
- If you had COVID-19 (confirmed by a test) for 14 days, even after symptoms have vanished as a precautionary measure
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO SELF ISOLATE?
Self-isolation is an important measure taken by those who have COVID-19 symptoms to avoid infecting others in the community, including family members.
Self-isolation is when a person who is experiencing fever, cough or other COVID-19 symptoms stays at home and does not go to work, school or public places. This can be voluntarily or based on his/her health care provider’s recommendation. However, if you live in an area with malaria or dengue fever it is important that you do not ignore symptoms of fever. Seek medical help. When you attend the health facility wear a mask if possible, keep at least 1 metre distant from other people and do not touch surfaces with your hands. Self-isolation is a significant precaution taken by people with COVID-19 symptoms to avoid infecting others within the group, including members of the family. Self-isolation is when a person with fever, cough or other COVID-19 symptoms stays at home and is not going to work, school or public places.
This can be done voluntarily or on the advice of his / her health care provider. When you live in an area with malaria or dengue fever, though, it ‘s important you don’t neglect fever symptoms. Looking for medical support.
If possible, keep at least 1 meter away from other people when you attend the health facility and do not touch surfaces with your hands. Help the child stick to this advice when it’s a child who is sick.
Please do the following if you do not live in malaria or dengue fever are:
- If a person is in self-isolation, it is because he/she is sick but not critically ill (requiring medical attention)
- Have a big, well-ventilated toilet and hand-hygiene facilities If not, put the beds at least 1 meter apart
- Keep yourself at least 1 meter from others, including family members
- Check your symptoms daily
- Isolate 14 days even if you’re feeling healthy
- When you encounter breathing problems, contact your healthcare provider immediately – call them first if possible
- Stay positive and motivated
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I HAVE NO SYMPTOMS, BUT I THINK I HAVE BEEN EXPOSED TO COVID - 19? WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO SELF-QUARANTINE?
Self-quarantine means separating yourself from others because you have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 even though you have no symptoms. You are monitoring yourself for symptoms during self-quarantine. The self-quarantine goal is to prevent transmission. Since people who become ill with COVID-19 can immediately infect people with self-quarantine, some infections can be prevented from happening. In this case:
- Have a spacious, well ventilated single room with toilet and hand hygiene facilities
- Place beds at least 1 meter apart if this is not possible
- Hold distance from others at least 1 metre, including from family members
- Check the symptoms daily
Self-quarantine for 14 days, even if you feel healthy. If you develop difficulty breathing, contact your healthcare provider immediately – call them first if possible. Stay positive and energized by keeping in touch with loved ones by phone or online, and by exercising yourself at home. When you live in an area with malaria or dengue fever, though, it ‘s important you don’t neglect fever symptoms. Looking for medical support. If possible, keep at least 1 meter away from other people when you attend the health facility and do not touch surfaces with your hands. Help the child stick to this advice when it’s a child who is sick.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SELF ISOLATION, SELF QUARANTINE& DISTANCING?
Quarantine involves restricting behaviours or separating people that are not themselves sick but may have been exposed to COVID-19. The goal is to keep the disease from spreading as people experience symptoms. Isolation involves separating individuals who are sick with COVID-19 symptoms and may be contagious to prevent the disease from spreading. To divide implies to be apart. WHO suggests maintaining a distance of at least 1 metre from others. This is a general step everybody can take, even if they are well off with no established COVID-19 exposure.
CAN CHILDREN OR ADOLESCENTS CATCH COVID -19?
Research indicates that children and adolescents are as likely as any other age group to get infected and can spread the disease. To date, research shows that children and young adults are less likely to experience serious disease, but extreme cases may also occur in those age groups. Children and adults will follow the same guidelines on self-quarantine and self-isolation if there is a chance of exposure or symptoms. Children must avoid contact with older people and others at risk for more severe illness
WHAT CAN I DO TO PROTECT MYSELF AND PREVENT THE SPREAD OF DISEASE?
- Clean your hands regularly and thoroughly with a hand rubbing based on alcohol, or wash them with soap and water. Why? For what? Washing your hands with soap and water by using hand rubbing based on alcohol destroys viruses which can be on your hands.
- Maintain a distance of at least 1 metre from each other. Why? For what? If someone coughs, sneezes or talks they release from their nose or mouth tiny liquid droplets that may contain the virus. If you’re too close, if the person has the disease, you can breathe in the droplets including the COVID-19 virus.
- Stop going to crowded areas. Why? For what? When people come together in groups, you are more likely to come into direct contact with someone who has COVID-19 so it becomes more difficult to maintain a physical distance of 1 metre.
- Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth. Why? For what? Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and infect you.
- Make sure you, and the people around you, practice good respiratory hygiene. This means covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately and wash your face. Why? Droplets spread the virus. By following good respiratory hygiene, you protect the people around you from viruses such as cold, flu and COVID-19.
- Stay home and self-isolate along with slight symptoms such as cough, headache, moderate fever, before you recover. Let anyone bring your supplies. If you need to leave your home, wear a mask to avoid infecting anyone. Why? Avoiding communication with others will shield them from potential COVID-19 and other viruses. If you have a fever, cough and trouble breathing, seek medical attention, but call by telephone in advance if possible and follow the instructions of your local health authority Why? National and local authorities should provide the most up to date information on the situation in your region. Calling in advance will allow your health care provider to quickly direct you to the right health facility. This will also protect you and help prevent the spread of viruses and other infections.
- Keep up to date on the latest information from trusted sources, such as Mediwissen, WHO or your local and national health authorities. Why? They are the best place to advise on what people should be doing to protect themselves.
IS THERE A VACCINE, DRUG OR TREATMENT FOR COVID -19?
While some western, traditional or home remedies may provide comfort and alleviate symptoms of mild COVID-19, there are no medicines that have been shown to prevent or cure the disease. WHO does not recommend self-medication with any medicines, including antibiotics, as a prevention or cure for COVID-19. However, there are several ongoing clinical trials of both western and traditional medicines. WHO is coordinating efforts to develop vaccines and medicines to prevent and treat COVID-19 and will continue to provide updated information as soon research results become available.
The most effective ways to protect yourself and others against COVID-19 are to:
- Clean your hands frequently and thoroughly
- Avoid touching your eyes, mouth and nose
- Cover your cough with the bend of elbow or tissue. If a tissue is used, discard it immediately and wash your hands.
- Maintain a distance of at least 1 metre from others.
GET AWARENESS ON COVID-19
In the wake of COVID-19, MEDIWISSEN launches a new initiative known as PROJECT WISSEN to raise awareness and educate people
Let’s Learn Together!
At Mediwissen we strive to provide free education. We believe education as a basic part of our lives and its the right of a person to be educated. Our motto ENHANCED KNOWLEDGE, ENHANCED HEALTH clearly explains our aim. When the knowledge of a person is enhanced it eventually leads to the betterment of healthcare.