Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus.
The U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) defines covid-19 as ” Coronavirus (COVID-19) is an illness caused by a virus that can spread from person to person. The virus that causes COVID-19 is a new coronavirus that has spread throughout the world”. WHO announced “COVID-19” as the name of this new disease on 11 February 2020.
People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. The CDC offers some key indicators on the symptoms as follows: These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus:
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Repeated shaking with chills
- Muscle pain
- Sore throat
- New loss of taste or smell
The CDC offers important guidelines for individuals to follow:
Clean your hands often
Avoid close contact
Cover coughs and sneezes
Clean and disinfect- frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks. EPA-registered household disinfectantexternal icon will work.
At the present time, there are no known treatments or cure for covid-19. It remains to be a novel virus. However, there are many clinical trials being administrated in various phases and geographic locations around the world. Please check our website to get the latest news. However, we advise you to always refer to the official news website on Covid-19 which is the U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) website. We also recommend the World Health Organization (WHO) website for the latest global efforts and news on covid-19.
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) provides guidelines on two types of tests that are available in the United States on Covid-19.
1. Diagnostic test is a test that indicates if a person is infected with the virus on that data the test was given. Per the CDC, ” the test kit is called the “Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) Real-Time Reverse Transcriptase (RT)–PCR Diagnostic Panel.” Individuals requesting a disgnostic test must verify with the lab if their diagnostic test meets the CDC approved test protocols. The results may take a few days or the individuals may decide to take the rapid tests which provides results in a short period of time.
2. Serology test more commonly called the Anti-body test is different type of test which uses an individuals blood to detect if a person has been infected with Covid-19 in the past. It outputs the results through anti-bodies which an individual may have developed due to Covid-19 infection. CDC however notes that we do not know if such anti-bodies will provide protection to individuals in the future. The data is still in the research and evaluation stage.
Food and Covid-19 virus
According to CDC there is no evidence to support that the covid-19 virus can be spread through food. Individuals however should be very creful in preparing food and avoid any direct coughing, sneezing etc directly on the food. Other precautions such as washing hands and washing raw vegetables thoroughly are also recommended. It is important to note that the virus is considered to enter humans through respiratory droplets.
Package materials and Covid-19 virus
There is currently no evidence that supports that the covid-19 virus can spread from packaging materials if handled properly. It is recommended that individuals should wash hands after they have handled packages as covid-19 virus may stay on cardboards for up to 24 hours. Some people use hand sanitizer wipes or sprays on cardboard packages as a precautionary measure to destroy the virus. Another option is to leave the package outside for a few days before opening. If you are getting food deliveries it is equally important to wash hands after food packages have been opened and as a precaution to dispose those packages in a safe manner.
According to CDC” An asymptomatic case is an individual infected with SARS-CoV-2 who does not exhibit symptoms during the course of infection”. CDC also notes that “Asymptomatic cases are challenging to identify because individuals do not know they are infected unless they are tested”.
Data on how many people are asymptomatic is still being analyzed. Percentage varies from 25% to as high as 70% of the population may be asymptomatic.