Monthly Archives: March 2020
COVID-19, caused by a coronavirus, has led to a pandemic that threatens everyone. The overriding strategy to limit the damage and to beat this pandemic is to “flatten the curve and raise the line.”
FLATTEN THE CURVE
During a pandemic, health care resources like hospitals and ICU beds can be overwhelmed by the sheer number of patients - above and beyond the baseline number of patients who are already being cared for by the healthcare system, like those with heart attacks, strokes, or other infections.
To visualize the progress of a disease outbreak over time, we can plot an epidemic curve. This is a graphic depiction of the number of new outbreak cases by date of onset of the disease. The overall shape of the curve can reveal the type of outbreak we’re dealing with and the horizontal line represents the capacity of the community health care system. Hospital capacity is defined as the number of beds, staffing, and other measu
Healthcare personnel who are caring for, or are otherwise in close proximity to, people suspected of having COVID-19 should wear N95 masks. Given that the supply of masks can get depleted quickly during an outbreak, these masks can be worn for extended use and limited reuse in many situations, assuming that the mask is working well and doesn’t pose the risk of cross-contamination. Non-healthcare personnel have a far lower risk of contracting COVID-19 and aren’t advised to wear N95 masks. For more information check out our video on COVID-19 on Osmosis.org.
Hold the N95 mask in the palm of your hand. Check the mask to ensure it is in good condition. To apply it, point its nose up and let its elastics dangle towards the floor. Place the mask on your face, pull the bottom strap around your head, rest it below your ears. The top strap goes on the crown of your head. Remember, this order is important. Bottom strap always first. Mold the nose piece to fit your nose. Remember, comf
By now you’ve probably heard of COVID-19, or coronavirus disease discovered in 2019, which is responsible for a global pandemic. COVID-19 is caused by SARS CoV-2, or severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, because it’s genetically similar to the SARS coronavirus which was responsible for the SARS outbreak in 2002.
Now, coronaviruses that circulate among humans are typically benign, and they cause about a quarter of all common cold illnesses. In COVID-19 what happened is that there was a coronaviruses circulating among bats, which are a natural animal reservoir, that seems to have mutated just enough to start infecting an intermediate host - the pangolin, an animal that looks like a cross between an anteater and an armadillo. In late 2019 the coronavirus mutated again and started causing disease in humans. The outbreak began in China, but has since spread around the world.
As of March 9, 2020, or roughly 3 months into the outbreak, there have been