A new strain of coronavirus has emerged, and so far the statistics are not looking good for those who become infected. The novel coronavirus has sickened 14 people – and eight of those people have died. The virus has been limited to the Middle East and United Kingdom. This new virus is part of the same family that causes the common cold and the outbreak of SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome).
Although there haven’t been any confirmed cases in the United States, the Center for Disease Control has issued a warning to all health care providers to be on the lookout for this new virus.
Coronavirus: First Evidence Emerges
In the United Kingdom, three family members have become sick with the novel coronavirus, this is the first evidence of human-to-human transmission, according to the CDC. However, according to the CDC, the virus is not well characterized and not spreading well, given the small number of confirmed cases since it was first identified in April 2012.
In this family, one person is in the intensive care unit, one person died, and the other is recovering after having a mild respiratory illness. This is also the first evidence of a mild case from the coronavirus – the combination of factors has led the CDC to update their guidance on the coronavirus.
Dangerous Virus: CDC Guidance
The CDC has issued guidance for health care providers regarding this new coronavirus. These include:
- Anyone traveling to the Arabian Peninsula or neighboring countries and becomes sick with severe acute lower respiratory illness within 10 days of travel and do not respond to therapy may be considered for an evaluation.
- Anyone whose respiratory illness remains unexplained and who meet criteria for “patient under investigation” should be reported to the CDC via the state health department.
The newest guidance from the CDC states, “persons who develop severe acute lower respiratory illness who are close contacts† of a symptomatic traveler who developed fever and acute respiratory illness within 10 days of traveling from the Arabian Peninsula or neighboring countries may be considered for evaluation for novel coronavirus infection. Testing of specimens for the novel coronavirus will be conducted at CDC.”
New guidance on what to do and look for in possible patients will be continually be added and changed as experts learn more about the coronavirus.
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