The Coronavirus, or COVID-19, the particular strand of the virus that has caused the global pandemic in the first few months of 2020 is a contagious disease that is spread quickly and easily in a short space of time.
The virus and its rapid spread has affected almost 300,000 people worldwide and doesn’t seem to be slowing down.
How Contagious is it?
The World Health Organisation has stated that on average, every person who has the virus will spread it on to two more people, making the disease highly contagious.
The virus surpasses seasonal flu with an average transmission rate of one person.
COVID-19 seems to be less contagious than some strands of influenza such as the H1C1 but again was less contagious than the Ebola outbreak of 2014.
So, overall the spread of virus always has depending factors, but the coronavirus which was named a pandemic in early March of 2020 has been one of the biggest outbreaks in recent history.
Continue reading more from the World Health Organisation.
Why is it important to wash your hands?
Washing your hands regularly is important in everyday life in order to avoid catching any illness such as colds, flu and food poisoning, not just the coronavirus.
Take a look at this information from the NHS on how to wash your hands effectively.
In periods of outbreak washing your hands is even more important because it stops viruses from entering the body if it is killed before it can do so.
Washing your hands with soap and warm water should be more than effective in killing these germs but it is even more effective to carry hand sanitiser with at least 70% alcohol content so you can kill any virus, like the coronavirus or bacteria on your hands if you cannot access a tap.
Find out how the virus enters the body from this article.
What to do if you think you have the virus
The government and the NHS have set out precautions and guidelines to help those who have or could contract the disease.
It is important that you DO NOT go to your GP, hospital or any medical centre due to the ease at which the virus can spread.
It is best to avoid contact with anyone, even if you do not have any symptoms as they can be hard to detect. There are a number of things that can help you do this including:
- Try to work from home, if possible
- Avoid large gatherings
- Keep at least 2 meters away from people within your vicinity.
If you feel you need urgent medical attention call the NHS 111 service.