The coronavirus started in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. Since then, it has spread beyond China, and the current death toll as of February 2020 is more than 2,200 individuals, with 14 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United States, and further cases confirmed in Iran, Italy, and South Korea. Unfortunately, the public is left wondering when and how it could affect them, and where to seek out reliable information on the illness so they can act on it, if need be.
The most worrisome aspect of coronavirus is how tremendous a threat is posed to public health, because there currently is no vaccine or specific medicine to treat it. In fact, public health officials from the World Health Organization (WHO) are concerned that it could become a global pandemic.
It’s essential to stay away from “fake news” when it comes to something deadly like coronavirus and to be well-informed. Separating fact from fiction can keep you safe. Some of the best resources to study coronavirus are:
- The World Health Organization (WHO)
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- Other fact-checked medical publications, such as Healthline
What Is Coronavirus?
Coronavirus is actually from a large family of viruses causing illnesses as mild as the common cold to more severe diseases such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, more commonly known as SARS. Common symptoms include respiratory distress, fever, fatigue, dry cough, shortness of breath, and the infection may progress to pneumonia, kidney failure, and in the worst cases, it is fatal.
Fortunately, about 80% of people infected with coronavirus recover without needing special medical treatment; however, about 15% of those who have it become seriously ill and developing breathing difficulties. Those most at risk are the elderly with underlying medical issues such as high blood pressure, heart disease, or diabetes.
Coronavirus spreads from others who are infected, similarly to the way the flu is spread – from small droplets of the infected person’s nose or mouth spread to another person. These droplets may land on surfaces an uninfected person can touch and then also become infected. WHO is still doing ongoing research on how coronavirus is spread.
Where Can I Get Tested for Coronavirus?
You may need to go to a special lab for a coronavirus test because only certain labs are allowed to test for it that have received approval by the CDC. The reason why is because the disease is highly contagious and virulent. You may be asked for a swab test, nasal aspirate, tracheal aspirate, sputum test, or a blood test. The test was developed by the CDC for the fastest, most accurate viral diagnosis.
To learn more about where you can get tested for coronavirus, please contact Advance ER at (214) 494-8222. NOTE: We do NOT test or treat coronavirus at our freestanding emergency room.