Wuhan Coronavirus reaches US amidst a rising death toll in China
A mysterious new strain of coronavirus has claimed the lives of nine people so far in Wuhan, China. The authorities have pleaded for an immediate halt on all transit in and out of the city. With more than 440 confirmed cases of the virus, it has already started spreading into nearby provinces. Of these, about 15 infected by the virus were healthcare providers who were handling other infected patients.
Some of the symptoms of the infection caused by the strain of coronavirus, known as 2019-nCoV, include fever, cough, pneumonia difficulty in breathing and other respiratory problems. Director of the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention Gao Fu, said in a statement that “We already know that the disease originated from a market which conducted illegal transaction of wild animals. This might be the cause, so the disease could be on an animal, and then passed on from this animal to a human.”
Other previously known diseases caused by strains of coronavirus, that spread through animals, include Severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars) and Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome (Mers.) This newly identified strain of the virus is said to be capable of mutating, adapting and spreading from one human to another through coughs and sneezes. It has also made its way into other Asian countries such as Japan, Thailand and South Korea. The situation is made worse by the extremely high number of people travelling across the country for the Lunar New Year week, thus making it difficult for proper control and prevention of the infection.
The US authorities on Tuesday detected at least one confirmed case of the virus. The Chinese National Health Commission in an effort to curb the spread of the outbreak is carrying out an advanced sterilization and ventilation of all passengers and a temperature screening of people going out of Wuhan.