CORONAVIRUS: All you need to know

By now you will almost certainly have heard about coronavirus. It is everywhere in the news, with countries around the world closing schools and restricting travel.

Coronavirus is a new flu-like virus spreading around the world. The virus causes an illness called Covid-19.

On Wednesday it was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization. The WHO is part of the UN and their aim is to look after the health and wellbeing of people around the world.

A pandemic is a disease that is spreading in multiple countries around the world at the same time.

At this stage, the number of people affected is relatively small. Covid-19 hadn’t been seen in humans until December 2019, so scientists are keen to limit its spread.

This article should answer all your questions about the virus, where it came from, how it has spread and, importantly, what government and medical officials are doing about it.

Where did Covid-19 come from?

The first cases were in China, in city called Wuhan, but has now spread across the world.

It is thought the disease originated at an animal market in the city, where it was transferred to a person.

The World Health Organization (WHO) have named the disease Covid-19, though you’ll still hear lots of people refer to it as ‘coronavirus’ as that is how it was known at first.

What is the WHO?

The WHO is a special group, which is part of the United Nations.

It was formed in 1948 and its aim is to look after the health and wellbeing of people around the world.

Since it began, it has done lots of medical work. For example, it helped to rid the world of the smallpox disease – the first disease to ever be officially wiped out by human effort.

The organisation is full of scientists and doctors who are helping to improve world health by stopping the spread of diseases and educating people about being healthy.

What is Covid-19?

The coronavirus is a respiratory virus – that means it affects people’s breathing and lungs.

Like the cold and flu bugs we get in the NZ, it can spread from person to person by coughing, or contact with contaminated surfaces or skin.

What is happening in New Zealand?

New Zealand has five confirmed cases of COVID-19. See the Ministry of Health latest media release for a summary of the current status.

The Ministry of Health believes with continued vigilance the chance of widespread community outbreak is expected to remain low.

What are the signs people have coronavirus?

The symptoms of COVID-19 are:

  • a cough
  • a high temperature (at least 38°C)
  • shortness of breath.

These symptoms do not necessarily mean you have COVID-19. The symptoms are similar to other illnesses that are much more common, such as cold and flu.

Shortness of breath is a sign of possible pneumonia and requires immediate medical attention.

We don’t yet know how long symptoms take to show after a person has been infected, but current World Health Organization assessments suggest that it is 2–10 days.

These symptoms may lead to more serious illnesses like pneumonia. This is dangerous for vulnerable people, such as the very old or people who are weaker due to other illnesses.

How does Covid-19 spread?

COVID-19, like the flu, can be spread from person to person.

When a person who has COVID-19 coughs, sneezes or talks, they may spread droplets containing the virus a short distance. These can settle on surrounding surfaces.

You may get infected by the virus if you touch those surfaces or objects and then touch your mouth, nose or eyes.

How can you protect yourself and others?

  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow or by covering your mouth and nose with tissues.
  • Put used tissues in the bin or a bag immediately.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water often (for at least 20 seconds).
  • Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell.
  • Don’t touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.
  • Avoid personal contact, such as kissing, sharing cups or food with sick people.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects, such as doorknobs.
  • Stay home if you feel unwell.

What is New Zealand doing against Covid-19?

A plan against coronavirus has been put in place by the government to help deal with a possible major outbreak in New Zealand.

The government may stop public gatherings if there was a major outbreak. The Ministry of Health also has detailed plans to cope with outbreaks of disease and the increases in demand on health services they could cause.

Some countries have already started to lockdown areas or regions. Italy has locked down the entire country.

This means travel around cities, and travel between them has been almost entirely stopped.

There have also been a lot of restrictions placed on international travel, with several European countries preventing flights between them.

In some places, people arriving from certain countries have been told they have to self-isolate.

How is Covid-19 treated?

Because it is a new virus, there’s currently no vaccine or medicine available yet to treat it. However, lots of scientists are working to develop one.

The only way to prevent it from spreading until then is to stop close contact with people who have the virus.

Doctors say properly washing your hands can also help to reduce the spread of the virus.

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iman
iman
7 months ago

i thought there was 4 cases in NZ

robbie
robbie
7 months ago

The coronavirus sucks!!! 😡😡😡

samuel ji
samuel ji
7 months ago

covid 19 might kill everyone in 2021 august : ( OOOOOOFFFFFFF (roblox XD)

Veera
Veera
7 months ago

I wish the Covid 19 was never a virus

bob
bob
7 months ago

the covid 19 is so dum

bob
bob
7 months ago

covid 19 is so dum

Valerie
Valerie
7 months ago

Corona virus has been around for a long time way longer than 1 year. Corona virus is just the flu COVID 19 in the newer version though the one that got spread around.

Amelia [harry potter fan]
Amelia [harry potter fan]
7 months ago

Covid 19 started as a virus in a fish and someone ate it and now it has spread.
It is so scary!
Someone almost coughed on me!
bleaaaaak

Ashley
Ashley
7 months ago

The coronavirus is just like the flu we don’t need to panic

[ ]
[ ]
7 months ago

I am not too worried about the Coronavirus, because I think that there will be a vaccine in 2021, I might be wrong, though.

saihajs
saihajs
7 months ago

i wist covid 19 gets cured O_O

potato
potato
7 months ago

thats no good

bob the builder
bob the builder
7 months ago

corona virus is gonna make people finally wash their hands 🙂

Luna
Luna
7 months ago

I wish the coronavirus wasn’t so deadly

Faith654
Faith654
7 months ago

People are over-reacting! Covid-19 is just and full and kids are not even affected by it!

Jeff
Jeff
7 months ago

No school!!!!!

no nme
no nme
7 months ago

very good article

.w.
.w.
7 months ago

Please look after yourselves NZ ! stay safe and eat your 5+ a day to not get sick!

jasmine
jasmine
7 months ago

the coronavirus doesn’t give you the excuse to be racist to asian people just because it came from china

Melanie martinez fan
Melanie martinez fan
7 months ago

are you kidding me this is annoying the weet bix triathlon got cancelled

Anah
Anah
7 months ago

the coronavirus sucks!!!😡😡😡

i dont know u
i dont know u
7 months ago

i hate you corona!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

jasmine
jasmine
7 months ago

I hate the coronavirus😠😠😠😠😠😠😠😠

dude
dude
7 months ago

There is now 28 case in nz and one in rotoura did you know that

ronny
ronny
7 months ago

why is the covid19 even here

Tristan
Tristan
6 months ago

I hate corona virus and getting the disease

MATTSUN
MATTSUN
6 months ago

I hate covid 19

Lillyen
Lillyen
6 months ago

Staying at home is boring 🙁

Leone
Leone
6 months ago

Hi NZ I want to say to “STAY AT HOME” 😀

GG GANG
GG GANG
6 months ago

It gives a lot of information but younger viewers might not understand all of it 👍🙂

GG GANG
GG GANG
6 months ago

It gives a lot of information but younger people mite not understand 👍

no telling name
no telling name
6 months ago

stay home to save your life and pleople life

Kaiya
Kaiya
6 months ago

don’t be so happy that school is over because covid 19 is here but we still might have to go to school when it is over

ilovecats
ilovecats
6 months ago

New Zealand´s prime minester is the best

Aussie
Aussie
6 months ago

its a sad virus and i miss school because of the covid-19

Kevin Gu
Kevin Gu
6 months ago

there is better result in NZ now almost 1-2 cases of Covid 19 and probable.
And the total is more than 1000

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