Wuhan Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)
Learn about how the [Ontario] Ministry of Health is preparing for the Wuhan novel coronavirus in Ontario. Find out how to protect yourself, what to do if you’re sick after you travel and how to recognize possible symptoms.
By the Ontario Ministry of Health
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. They can cause diseases ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).
Some human coronaviruses spread easily between people, while others do not.
Your risk of severe disease may be higher if you have a weakened immune system. This may be the case for:
- older people
- people with chronic disease (for example, diabetes, cancer, heart, renal or chronic lung disease)
Wuhan novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV)
On December 31, 2019, Chinese health authorities identified a new (or novel) coronavirus (referred to as 2019-nCoV) through a series of reported cases of pneumonia in Wuhan, China.
Testing is being conducted at the Public Health Ontario Laboratory, which is working collaboratively with the National Microbiology Laboratory in Winnipeg.
How Ontario is preparing
Ontario is working with its partners in the health care system implementing a robust plan to monitor for, detect and, if needed, isolate any cases the Wuhan novel coronavirus. The Ministry of Health is taking several steps to ensure the health and safety of Ontarians. This includes:
- monitoring hospitals for potential cases of the virus in individuals with travel history to Wuhan, China
- adding novel coronavirus as a designated disease reportable under Ontario’s public health legislation, enabling local public health units to quickly and effectively take all necessary measures to investigate, complete lab tests and do case and contact management to prevent and control further spread of the infection
- ongoing planning with federal and provincial/territorial partners and readiness to coordinate with other provinces/territories if the virus is identified in Ontario
- promoting awareness and providing guidance to health care providers
- closely monitoring the situation and coordinating with Public Health Ontario and Public Health Agency of Canada
- meeting with hospitals, paramedics and local public health units near Pearson International Airport to provide further information on the federal border screening measures
Symptoms range from common to severe respiratory illnesses and include:
- difficulty breathing
- pneumonia, kidney failure and death in severe cases
How to protect yourself
To reduce exposure to and transmission of a range of illnesses, including coronaviruses, you should follow usual health precautions such as:
- washing your hands often
- avoiding contact with people who are sick
- practising proper cough and sneeze etiquette
If you are travelling to an area known to have cases of coronavirus, be sure to avoid:
- high-risk areas such as farms, live animal markets and areas where animals may be slaughtered
- contact with animals (alive or dead), including pigs, chickens, ducks and wild birds
- surfaces with animal droppings or secretions on them
Read the entire Ontario Health Ministry release with links – click HERE
Another good article …
The Wuhan Virus: How to Stay Safe
As China’s epidemic continues to spread, things may seem scary. Here are ten simple precautions that can protect you from contracting the coronavirus.
By Laurie Garrett – a former senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations and a Pulitzer Prize winning science writer.
As the new Wuhan coronavirus has spread not only all over mainland China, but also worldwide, panic is rising. Inside China there is a growing sense of helplessness, as the government is compelled to take drastic measures to stop the virus, including introducing some travel restrictions in Beijing. I have received panicked queries from journalists and public health workers in China, asking, “How can we protect ourselves and our families?”
The epidemic could have been controlled fairly easily three weeks ago had there been more openness, swift action, and no attempted cover-up. But now it’s too late, and this virus is spreading globally. Because there is no vaccine or treatment for nCoV2019—the Wuhan pneumonia—and infection has spread throughout China, the government is forced to turn to its 2003 SARS playbook. And that means entire cities must be cut off, and the population of the nation must be restricted in its movements and potential disease-spreading behavior. It is not surprising then that travel out of Beijing may be forbidden; the entire mainland could go on lockdown soon.
I know people are very frightened. And I expect panic will rise in the coming days. But very simple measures can protect you.
Find this full article HERE