How to protect yourself against Coronavirus

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The latest coronavirus continues to spread around the planet, prompting administrations to step up efforts to contain the spread of the disease it causes, officially called as Covid-19.

More than 185,059 people have died globally from the disease, while more than 2,653,808 infections have been verified in dozens of countries, according to the WHO, which has now declared the outbreak a pandemic.

How serious is this outbreak?

On 11 March, the WHO characterised the new Covid-19 as a pandemic.

The infection is now more widespread than the SARS outbreak, which is originated in China.

The WHO has designated the outbreak with its top warning level, as it did for the 5 others, including polio in 2014, Ebola in 2014, the Zika virus in 2016 and swine flu in 2009.

How to protect yourself and others

Wash your hands, wet your hands with running, clean water and apply soap. Lather your hands, including the backs, between your fingers, and under your nails and scrub for at least twenty seconds. Rinse.

Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you sneeze or cough, then throw the tissue in the bin and wash your hands. If you do not have a tissue to hand, sneeze or cough into your elbow rather than your hands.

Face masks provide some protection as they block liquid droplets. Anyway, they do not block little aerosol parties that can pass via the material of the mask. The masks also leaves the eyes naked and there is a proof that some viruses can infect a person via the eyes.

Seek early medical help, if you have cough, fever and problem in breathing, share your travel history with healthcare providers.

If visiting live markets in affected places reject unprotected, direct contact with live animals and surfaces that have been in contact with animals.

If you have returned from an affected place in the last 2 weeks, stay indoors and reject contact with other people for fourteen days. This means not going to school, work or public areas.

If you have returned from an infected place and develop a high cough, temperature, runny nose, sore throat or hard breathing do not leave your home until you have been given suggestion by a doctor.

Many countries have advised people travelling back from China to self-quarantine for at least 2 weeks.

The coronavirus mortality rate stands at 2.4%, while SARS killed 9.5% of those infected.