March 2020

NHS will struggle with having enough beds for the CORONAVIRUS patients

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CORONAVIRUS COULD KILL LARGE NUMBER

Chief Medical Officer says “large absolute number” deaths possible CORONAVIRUS cases have increased rapidly as 100’s of people in the UK have become infected. The UK’s Chief Medical Officer Professor Chris Whitty has said “I’m expecting the number only to go up, and there are now several – not large numbers – but several cases where we cannot see where this has come from in terms of a clear transmission, either because someone has come directly from overseas or because they’ve had a close contact with someone who has recently returned from overseas.” 

CORONAVIRUS – DELAY PHASE

The delay phase is where the government tries to tackle the virus faster, in order to delay spreading the infection further. The government has stated that “Action that would be considered could include population distancing strategies (such as school closures, encouraging greater home working, reducing the number of large-scale gatherings) to slow the spread of the disease throughout the population, while ensuring the country’s ability to continue to run as normally as possible.” Small amount of deaths possible Professor Whitty thinks that deaths from Covid-19 could be  “large absolute number” depending on how many are infected. 

NHS WILL STRUGGLE

The one thing that the NHS will struggle with is having enough beds for the patients, something that it already struggles with day-to-day. The government is expecting retired doctors and nurses to come back to work and help hospitals control the epidemic. No vaccine for a year Whitty thinks that we’d be lucky to get a vaccine within a year, but we need to be realistic, there is a high chance this virus could continue to circulate in the UK for a while. 

WHAT YOU SHOULD STOCK UP ON

30 days worth of medicine Food staples Laundry detergent Diapers (if you have children) Rubbing alcohol What you need to remember: clean all surfaces in your home regularly, anything that you regularly touch should be a priority. This includes your phone, laptop screens, tablets and trackpad or mouse. Schedule a flu vaccine especially if you have kids, or if you’re elderly or pregnant. Those with compromised immune systems are of higher risk of infection.

WHAT IS CORONAVIRUS?

Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). This virus is able to pass between animals and humans, meaning that you should protect your pets just as much as your family too. MERS-CoV originated in Saudi Arabia in 2012 and was found to be transmitted from camels to humans. It was first discovered after a patient died from severe respiratory disease. Since then, over 2521 cases have been reported worldwide, including 919 deaths. Around 3 or 4 out of 10 people who have been diagnosed with MERS have died. People with pre-existing diseases such as: diabetes, cancer, chronic lung/kidney/heart disease were amongst those diagnosed with this condition. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

Most frequent questions and answers

What are the symptoms of coronavirus?

Symptoms of coronavirus include, sneezing, coughing, shortness of breath and fever. If you have these symptoms, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have coronavirus. You may just have a cold or the flu.

Is there a cure for coronavirus?

Currently there is no cure for coronavirus as it is a new virus. It may take up to a year for a vaccine to be created.

How do you diagnose coronavirus?

The health protection team will take a few samples to see if you have the virus. This includes: mucus from your nose, throat or lungs, a blood sample and a stool sample. You may be isolated from other people until they confirm whether you’re affected or not.

Does coronavirus only affect the elderly?

No, coronavirus can affect people of all ages. It is more likely for those with weaker immune systems, or pre-existing illnesses (like heart disease or diabetes) to contract the virus. Keep washing your hands with soap and water to avoid symptoms.

A relative has just come back from an affected country. Should I stay away from them?

If your relative has just come back from China, Italy or other affected areas, you don’t necessarily need to stay away from them. If you’re in the UK call 111 to find out what precautions you can take.

What can I do to prevent spreading the virus?

1. Wash your hands every time you: get home or into work, before and after you eat or handle food and after you blow your nose or cough. 

2. Remember to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds.

3. Don’t touch your face.

Should I work from home, do I avoid festivals and other events?

It is not necessary to work from home, or take your child out of school unless you have been advised to by a medical professional. Some events are being cancelled as a precaution but if you wish to go to an event it is still possible to do so. This is subject to change.

I’m pregnant and may have come in contact with someone with coronavirus. What should I do?

Seek medical attention as soon as possible. Anyone based in the UK should call 111 in the first instance. 

Coronavirus face mask

There is no proof that face masks work against coronavirus.

Can pets spread coronavirus?

Yes pets can  contract coronavirus, so make sure to wash your hands before and after touching your pet.

What is classified as "close contact"?

Being in close contact means that you’ve either: spoken face-to-face for a few minutes minimum, living in the same house, come into contact with their body fluids, been coughed on, been within 2 metres of the person for more than 15 minutes.

How should I self-isolate myself if I’m affected?

Do not go to work or school, do not use public transport or taxis, ask friends/family/delivery drivers to drop off food and other supplies for you, but do not have visitors. Do this for up to 14 days. If symptoms persist, contact your local medical services.

What is coronavirus?

Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). This virus is able to pass between animals and humans, meaning that you should protect your pets just as much as your family too. 

I am about to travel to another country, what do I need to know?

Research the country you’re about to visit beforehand, you will find articles from that country’s government on what places you should/not visit and details of emergency numbers to call whilst you’re there. It is advised that you don’t travel during this period unless it is mandatory that you do so.

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